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You must have had enough of the pandemic. It's been hard on everyone, and yet while the economic and human shocks of the pandemic have occupied the full attention of the entire world, once it comes under control, the focus will shift to recovery. A global emergency demonstrated some risks know no borders and have a massive capacity to wreak havoc on humanity, indiscriminately, impacting lives and jobs, and grinding much of the global economy to a halt.

The pandemic also called on us to come together with compassion and humility as humanity in general as we tackle significant challenges of our time, namely, Global Warming, Social Instability, and Gender or Race inequality to name a few. The road to recovery will not be easy…

According to the Swiss Re Institute's recent Economic and Financial Risk Insights report, the pandemic's resurgence will continue to challenge the US and European recoveries in the short-term. We expect some relatively subdued economic growth points as a result of the recession. However, base effects will then come into play, possibly translating to a notable increase in inflation that may well temporarily exceed 2% by around May.

According to the Swiss Re Institute's recent Sigma report, we're experiencing the deepest recession of our lifetimes; millions of people have lost their jobs and governments have increased their debt. Stock markets are coming to pre-pandemic levels, but this isn't a reflection of reality and sooner or later, like in any market bubble, there is a moment of rebalancing.

While we all want to continue growing, we think about strategies how to achieve differentiated and sustainable growth. Therefore, using technology and utilising the power of data are essential ingredients for the next couple of years.

Let me demonstrate in a few concrete examples how we think about it.

Expanding data driven underwriting tools

While the construction industry was booming globally, we at Swiss Re started much earlier than most to underwrite large and heavily complex infrastructure, construction, and engineering projects. Our long-standing experience and related data points were always an asset which made it easy to tailor our underwriting platform (digital PUMA solution). Today, our extended process platform allows clients to cover risks in this long-tail business with a strong level of confidence, driven by the expertise of Swiss Re made available through our platform. And there is more to come thinking about how to extend data use and our tool landscape.

On the image: Swiss Re started to underwrite large and heavily complex infrastructure, construction, and engineering projects very early on. Today, our process and tool allow clients to write shares of multi-million and multi-billion risks.

And whilst we are going bigger, we will also enable more granular insights into smaller risks.

Swiss Re experts have been working meanwhile on an additional underwriting approach for smaller standard risks, an additional rating module for Machinery Breakdown covers, and also a portfolio dashboard to drill into all exposures of a portfolio. That is how our  digital PUMA solution will bring better underwriting insights to our engineering clients.  

Enhancing location intelligence and climate risk

Besides COVID-19, climate change is still one of the biggest global challenges. Our flagship tool, CatNet®, helps to better assess the risk by combining hazard, loss, exposure and your insurance information with selected background maps and satellite imagery. To enable this, we have substantially invested in our modelling capabilities throughout the years, and we are bringing them to the next level.

In a world where data-driven decisions are key, having access to multiple risk attributes gives underwriters the ability to pick the best risks at the point of quote. CatNet® supports a wide range of business processes, from improved single-risk assessments to risk engineers who conduct surveys. It can provide exposure insights and location data set analysis, thus supporting accumulation control. It helps you write for international and local businesses where risk assessment is challenging.

On image 2: CatNet® assesses the risk by combining hazard, loss, exposure and your insurance information with selected background maps and satellite imagery.

And most importantly, CatNet® Premium gives you access to climate risk parameters, such as increases in global temperatures, exceedance probabilities of extreme precipitation and a rise in sea levels. These are visualised as separate layers, whilst also delivering a combined Climate Risk Score to assess the future impact to individual risks or portfolios.

With more than 150 years of experience, we can help you write the next chapter of growth by harnessing the power of technology. We steer enterprises through the many next steps of their digital journey.

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