Insurance & Finance


Natural Risk Insurance and Disaster Mitigation

The insurance industry is increasingly embracing earth observation data to boost efficiency, estimate risk exposures, detect cumulated risk, and reduce time to assess the loss, especially in natural disasters. The better you estimate risk upfront and the earlier you know your exposure in a disrupted area, the better you can determine competitive insurance premium, can - in case of events - shift and allocate resources, get an alert of an unfolding crisis, and monitor it as it progresses. Insurers use earth observation data to establish real-time damage assessment over a large area without sending their field agents to these high-risk locations or helping their assessors to boost efficiency. This saves insurers time and cost, allows them to promptly assess their risk exposure, differentiate damaged & undamaged assets, and process claims more accurately. When responsiveness matters most, having the information insurers need to empower their people to exceed customers’ expectations is paramount, and satellite and aerial-based observation works as an enabler to help achieve this goal.

Location intelligence becomes relevant as insurance claims are 100% location-based. Geospatial insurance technology brings complete spatial awareness and real-time data to underwriters' fingertips and speeds up decision-making. The reinsurance industry is already moving in the direction of utilizing satellite imagery for loss prediction and assessment. New schemes like index-based insurances also cover risk in areas where historical damage data and an assessor network are missing. Additionally, technological advancements, coupled with a rapid expansion of satellite data and value-added services, like geospatial analytics, have rendered satellite images more affordable and versatile for use across various industries, including insurance.

Earth observation data builds a knowledge repository to predict flood events and reduce the response rate, whether in a particular geography or worldwide. This is important in areas where no other technology could provide the speed and scale of satellite imagery.

Availability of satellite imagery before, during, or after an event allows the insurance company to assess the damage and shorten the timeline to assist the property owner during a time of need. This allows Hazard Insurance Claims Management to provide accurate and timely damage reports and weed out fraudulent claims, which might occur after such events.

The collection of such data would be mainly virtually impossible on the ground. We are fortunate to have a tremendous industry with geospatial capabilities that can mobilize and collect satellite imagery and other techniques like accurate elevation models over thousands of square miles of affected areas. Insurance companies can also monitor temporal land-use change for an enriched understanding of risk exposure using land use classification. Satellite imagery can help balance need, response time, and accuracy of a claim.


Insurance companies looking to obtain a competitive edge can use earth observation data across the board - from topographic modeling to derived vegetation metrics.

These data sets can help insurers gain the advantage of understanding current and future risks to their investments and calculate the best insurance premium prices.

Benefits of Satellite Remote Sensing for Agri-Insurances and Agri-Management

Earth Observation satellites, optical and RADAR - all-weather, can capture data that traditional means cannot efficiently, such as

  • Farm crop yields
  • Mapping of crops
  • Geotagging farmland to specific farmers
  • Farm diversification
  • Planting cycles and trends in production
  • Satellite data can guide ground data and estimate yield at the village level
  • Satellite data can reduce the transnational costs of reaching rural farmers and, ultimately, make finance more affordable for smallholder farmers
  • Satellite imagery provides sufficient detail on clients without an established credit history to make lending decisions combined with demographics, financial, agronomic, geospatial, and psychometric data
  • Post-loan support by utilizing satellite imagery to monitor the performance of loans through the cropping cycle
  • Space-based data can reduce the cost, increase the credit approvals, and decrease turnaround time and non-performing loans

Agri-institutions could forecast revenues, potential repayment deficits, and income timing to access comprehensive and reliable data on factors like productivity, prices, and weather.

Agri Risk Management

Credit Risk ( Planting Crops, raise product, harvesting, market delivery)

  • Repayment exposed to adverse weather, price volatility, diseases, land values
  • Absence of critical data for Credit Risk
  • Production Risk
  • Increased Production or harvesting costs due to fertilizer and transportation costs
  • Unfavorable climatic conditions like Soil Erosion, Flooding, Droughts
  • Market Volatility
  • Large price fluctuations due to weather, global changes in supply & demand
  • Agri Products could have local to global marketing
  • Interest Rate Risk
  • Borrowers may be given loans at zero rates, but lenders are exposed to funding risk
  • Liquidity Risk
  • Crop Losses or unfavorable market conditions could strain liquidity
  • Operational Risk
  • Poor Documentation, lack of digitization of records
  • Robust Agri Lending and Risk Solutions not tailored for Small farm Agri sector
  • Financial Institutions often lack the technology and personnel to address this issue
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