Swiss Re Corporate Solutions becomes Official Insurance Provider of Solar Impulse, bringing the goal of flying around the world using only solar power a step closer

19 September 2012, Zurich

Swiss Re Corporate Solutions, the commercial insurance arm of Swiss Re Group, is joining forces with Solar Impulse, the world’s first purely solar powered airplane able to fly through the night, as its Official Insurance Provider. Swiss Re Corporate Solutions will now support Swiss aviation pioneers Bertrand Piccard and André Borschberg's ambition to fly around the world powered only by solar energy by becoming the sole insurer of the revolutionary airplane.

Swiss Re Corporate Solutions' partnership will give Solar Impulse the security of a full insurance solution and additional financial support with which to pursue their ambition to fly around the world using only solar energy. The partnership is an important step allowing Solar Impulse to continue to promote the technologies which will reduce energy consumption, minimize society's dependence on fossil fuels and increase awareness of the potential for renewable energies such as solar power.

2012 has been an important year and stepping stone for Solar Impulse, which completed its first intercontinental flight by connecting Europe to Africa via seven legs and 6000km. This journey placed the company at the forefront of public perception, making it an important benchmark for the development of solar power and a sustainable global energy mix.

"This partnership is an excellent fit between two organisations who share a belief that innovation can flourish when knowledge and expertise is combined across industries," says Agostino Galvagni, CEO of Swiss Re Corporate Solutions. "Swiss Re Corporate Solutions is showing that it has the expertise to match Solar Impulse's needs on a project which will potentially revolutionise the way we power society."

Bertrand Piccard, Initiator and Chairman of Solar Impulse, welcomes this new partnership. "When my grandfather completed the first flight into the stratosphere in 1931, nobody wanted to insure him! Today, Swiss Re Corporate Solutions has proven its pioneering spirit by insuring a revolutionary experimental prototype."

Swiss Re has a long track record advocating the importance of renewable energy and clean technologies. Through its Corporate Solutions business unit, Swiss Re has a wealth of expertise in insuring large-scale aviation, engineering, construction and renewable energy projects along the entire value chain. Such insurance solutions are important enablers of innovation because they mitigate the financial risks and improve the bankability of pioneering projects.

"This partnership with a specialist in risk mitigation like Swiss Re Corporate Solutions will strengthen the team to further improve the reliability and the safety of the flight around the world," explains André Borschberg, co-founder and CEO of the project.

Notes to editors

Swiss Re Corporate solutions experts are available to the role of insurance in renewable energy, aviation and engineering projects.

For interviews please contact Swiss Re media relations +41 43 2857171 or Media_Relations@SwissRe.com

For media enquiries regarding Solar Impulse please contact Alexandra Gindroz, Media Relations Manager, Tel. +41 58 219 2440, Mobile +41 79 688 45 55 or alexandra.gindroz@solarimpulse.com

Swiss Re Corporate Solutions
Swiss Re Corporate Solutions offers innovative, high-quality insurance capacity to mid-sized and large multinational corporations across the globe. Our offerings range from standard risk transfer covers and multi-line programmes, to highly customised solutions tailored to the needs of our clients. Swiss Re Corporate Solutions serves customers from over 40 offices worldwide and is backed by the financial strength of the Swiss Re Group. For more information about Swiss Re Corporate Solutions, please visit www.swissre.com/corporatesolutions or follow us on Twitter @SwissRe_CS.

Solar Impulse
Solar Impulse HB-SIA is the first aircraft that can fly day and night without fuel or polluting emissions. It demonstrates the huge potential of new technologies in terms of energy reduction and the production of renewable energy. This revolutionary carbon fibre aircraft, that has the wingspan of an Airbus A340 (63.4m) and the weight of an average family car (1,600kg), is the result of seven intense years of work, calculations, simulations and tests by a team of 70 people and 80 partners. A plane this light and of this size has never been built before. The 12,000 solar cells built into the wing provide four 10HP electric motors with renewable energy. By day the solar cells recharge the 400kg lithium batteries which means the plane can fly at night. The Solar Impulse project is supported by Main Partners: Solvay, Omega, Deutsche Bank and Schindler; Official Partners: Bayer Material Science, Swiss Re and Altran; Official Scientific Advisor: EPFL (the Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne) and Aeronautical Consultant: Dassault-Aviation.