Shipping Giant Maersk Deploys First Blockchain-based Marine Insurance

May 28, 2018 20:30 UTC

AP Moller – Maersk, the world’s largest shipping company, has deployed the first blockchain platform for marine insurance, Insurwave, a joint venture between Guardtime, a software security provider, and Ernst & Young, an accounting firm.

The platform is also being used by Willis Towers Watson, MS Amlin and XL Catlin. Maersk trialed the system and is using it for its marine hull insurance. Microsoft Azure provides the blockchain technology using ACORD standards, according to Seatrade Maritime News.

Platform Automates Processes

Lars Henneberg, head of risk and insurance for AP Moller – Maersk, said moving to the platform has helped automate manual processes and reduced inefficiencies for the company, which owns 350 container vessels worldwide.

The technology will manage risk for more than 1,000 vessels and support more than 500,000 transactions in the first year.

Alastair Swift, CEO of Willis Towers Watson, said blockchain technology has the potential to revolutionize insurance. He said the first insurance transaction done on the blockchain has simplified and streamlined the transactional process and created added value for the company’s clients.

Policies will be automatically updated to reflect risk using IoT and smart contracts, according to Martin Henley, chief information officer of XL Catlin. The company is ready to begin working on opening the platform to other insurance segments.

Microsoft and Guardtime intend to extend Insurwave to the global logistics, marine cargo, energy and aviation sectors.

Also read: EY, Microsoft and shipping giant Maersk develop blockchain marine insurance platform

‘Groundbreaking’ Corda Deployment

Todd McDonald, head of partnerships and co-founder at the R3 blockchain conglomerate, said on the R3 website that Insurwave is groundbreaking deployment of R3’s Corda software, which is now available on Microsoft’s Azure platform.

McDonald noted that Insurwave connects clients, brokers, insurers and third parties to distributed common ledgers that integrate identity, risk and exposure data into insurance contracts.

The Corda blockchain can link data from multiple parties to policy contracts, McDonald explained. The blockchain can receive and respond to information that results in a business process or price change. It can record information about assets and transactions, then validate notification and loss data. The key benefits are lower costs, higher sales and rules compliance.

All parties to the contract are privy to real-time visibility into condition, safety and location of assets being transported worldwide, delivering fair and accurate pricing and underwriting, McDonald said. Participants also reap operational savings from improved use of claims processing, risk management and policy amendment personnel.

The product offers new business opportunities for multinational shippers like Maersk that provide risk an insurance for cargo customers.

Images from Shutterstock

Last modified: May 28, 2018 22:32 UTC

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Lester Coleman is a media relations consultant for the payments and automated retailing industries.