Four sponsors of the GVNW Symposium reveal their biggest risk concerns

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“As WannaCry and Petya have demonstrated once more, cyber has become a key corporate risk. German companies are increasingly aware of their exposure and consider cyber insurance to be a key element of a comprehensive cyber resilience strategy as there is no 100 % IT security. While data privacy will be further enforced by the new EU data protection regulation in 2018, German companies are worried about losses from cyber-related business interruption. Cyber is just one example of intangible risks which will increasingly matter for companies in future. It’s less the factory, it’s digital assets such as data, supplier networks, brand value or intellectual property playing a major role. Our industry will have to focus on providing solutions for protecting intangible assets.”

Andreas Berger, AGCS board member and chief executive for AGCS Central and Eastern Europe

German companies are not only facing local challenges, but also global ones. In this regard, the motto of this year’s GVNW Symposium is very fitting and hits the nerve of time: ‘Global risks and trends – local challenges’. A loss event on the other side of the world can impact a business just as much as an incident at home. Global trends and developments meet local conditions and standards, which must be taken into account when making strategic business decisions. Overall, the supply chain is and remains the greatest challenge, and must always be secured. The biggest supply chain risks continue to be fire hazards and natural catastrophes.

Our FM Global Resilience Index provides companies with a first orientation when identifying potential supply chain risks, and our Global Flood Map reliably pinpoints potential flood risks on a global scale. FM Global is convinced that most losses can be avoided. With the help of our tools and expertise in industrial property insurance, we work together with our clients to minimise their worldwide exposure.

Achim Hillgraf, VP and operations manager, Central and Eastern Europe, FM Global

Currently, we see three prevalent risks for our clients in Germany:

  1. Uncertainty for multinational business: As the geopolitical outlook remains unstable, many of our clients are experiencing a degree of uncertainty for their export-focused multinational businesses. Political and economic events such as the UK’s vote to leave the EU and the ongoing effects of the financial crisis could develop into great concerns for multinationals as well as their local partners.
  2. Reputational damage: This is increasingly on our clients’ agenda. In the past, Germany was viewed as a market with high integrity and compliance measures. The mark ’Made in Germany’, which has always represented products of the highest quality, has been negatively impacted by recent corporate scandals. It remains to be seen if Germany’s position as a sought-after business hub will be affected by this.
  3. Cyber risk has risen high up the corporate agenda. The scale of cyber-attacks has grown, as evidenced by the recent malware infiltrations, and companies around the world are still counting the damage. They don’t know what’s coming and that makes it difficult to prepare for an attack, increasing vulnerability across all industries.

As risk partners for all our clients, AIG is continually sharing insights, and offers comprehensive solutions to enable our clients to understand and prepare for the risks they face, not just today but in the future. Our technical expertise, focused approach, and specialised underwriting, claims, and loss control services help clients to manage risks specific to their business, no matter what its size.

Alexander Nagler, managing director Northern Europe, AIG

Business interruptions including disruptions in the supply chains are very important in such an export driven economy like Germany. Also negative market developments and the growing risk of protectionism are very relevant risks. Cyber threats are continuously growing in times of increased automation and the Internet of Things. Additionally natural catastrophes and the growing threat of terrorism attacks are also top of mind.

We offer significant capacities and take an innovative approach to developing the right solutions for our clients. Following discussions with clients and brokers we recently increased our property and terrorism insurance capacities to match their needs. Through global programmes we are able to support our clients around the world. We are future-focused so today we are looking into new and emerging risks and opportunities. We are part of the Blockchain Insurance Initiative “B3i” in which we are exploring distributed ledger technologies’ ability to increase efficiencies in the exchange of data between reinsurance and insurance companies. We also have a partnership with Oxbotica, a technology company with a focus on Mobile Robotics and autonomous systems, to better understand the developing risks connected with the increased automation in a wide range of industries. Our approach and activities help us to continue to develop insurance solutions that our clients really need.

Dieter Goebbels, country manager Germany and regional manager Central Europe, XL Catlin