Farnborough visitors are long accustomed to the engineering excellence to be found on the stands of Russian companies like Yakovlev (Hall 1, Stand E8). But they may be less familiar with the financial expertise of the Russian Insurance Centre (RIC), in which aircraft manufacturer Yakovlev is a shareholder.
RIC is now a regular at the world's leading airshows, promoting a package of services that includes cover for aircraft and ground equipment deliveries by Russian manufacturers to countries such as China, India, Ethiopia and Nepal. The company insured exhibition stands for last year's MAKS show in Moscow and the Paris Salon at Le Bourget. RIC policies cover aircraft damage or loss from accidents in the air or on the ground, as well as protecting owners against civil liability for damage or loss to third parties.
Set up in 1992, RIC is jointly owned by Yakovlev, Rosoboronexport, NPO Energomash and a number of other Russian defence companies. Its core business is insurance for defence and aerospace enterprises, focusing on the transportation of military and other special consignments.
Domestic customers include Rosoboronexport, the KBP, KBM and NPO Mash military design bureau, and other companies producing military equipment for export. It is currently covering risks valued at more than $500 million.
Another key strand is the space launch insurance business, which RIC entered by winning a Russian Strategic Rocket Forces (RVSN) competition for official accreditation. Recent customers include the Russian Federal Space Agency, NPO Space Forces, RVSN, TsKB Progress, the Russian Satellite Communications Company, Loral, Hughes, AsiaSat, Lockheed Martin Telecommunications and Astrium.
Launches covered include the Zarya Functional Cargo Block (the first element of the International Space Station), Telstar 6 and seven Iridium satellites. RIC launch policies are comprehensive, covering payload development, manufacture, transportation and pre-launch operations, insertion into orbit, early orbital operations and full operation.
The company attributes its ability to take on major risks to a high degree of financial stability based on significant reserves, allied to flexible reinsurance on the domestic and foreign markets. It works initially with Russian and CIS insurance companies until the capacity of the regional market has been reached. Then, for large-scale risks running to hundreds of millions of dollars, it has recourse to international re-insurers.
On the international market, RIC has access to re-insurance partners via Lloyds of London brokers Willis, Aon, Marsh. Partners include Munich Re (Standard & Poor's rating A+), Assicurazioni Generali (AA) and Ge Frankona Re (AA-).
With its impressive domestic and international customer base, Russian Insurance Centre is a good example of how the Russian aerospace manufacturing industry is broadening its scope to embrace a fuller range of important support services.
Source: Flight Daily News