Northcourt Limited (Northcourt), a managing agent, was launched today, saying it brings with it “the first new capacity to the global nuclear insurance market in more than a generation”.
Northcourt is headed by Chief Executive Officer Alan Rickett, who was previously a Senior Vice President at broker Marsh.
The new facility has been registered in Malta, licensed to underwrite nuclear business on a global basis and regulated by the Malta Financial Services Authority.
“Northcourt is a timely response to the shortage of capacity in the traditional global nuclear insurance market, for too long dominated by nuclear pools and mutuals,” said Mr Rickett. “Amid burgeoning investment in nuclear energy worldwide there is a growing demand for a new approach to insurance which is aligned with the global nature of the industry today. There is limited insurer choice for nuclear companies and many have expressed growing concern over the existing market’s ability to cope with an increased demand for limits and scope of cover.”
He added that unlike traditional nuclear insurance pools, which are territory-based, Northcourt has the ability to place nuclear insurance programmes globally through its panel of leading Lloyd’s insurers, all of which have a security rating of A or above.
Amlin will be the lead underwriter in the facility and Duncan Dale, Head of Property & Casualty for Amlin London explained: “As nuclear technologies develop and new markets open across the world, so do the contingent risks of this industry. Amlin and the insurer panel seek to enable this development through flexible risk coverage and are pleased to have supported Northcourt in bringing a long-overdue new approach to the market.”
Both Marsh and the group’s reinsurance intermediary Guy Carpenter, have been involved in the creation of Northcourt. Marsh will provide accounting and administrative services in Malta and Guy Carpenter will manage Northcourt’s insurance market placements.
Mark Popplewell, International Nuclear Practice Leader at Marsh, commented: “The growth of nuclear energy cannot be underestimated. Over 60 new nuclear reactors are currently being built globally, with in excess of 400 in the pipeline. Nuclear power is regarded by many as the solution to the world’s energy problems.
“Due to the limitations of the existing nuclear insurance arrangements, clients have often in the past struggled to get competitive insurance protection. As the nuclear sector matures and the nuclear renaissance continues to gather momentum, Northcourt offers an exciting source of alternative capital.”
Northcourt will initially offer property damage and business interruption insurance up to $200m and anticipates expanding into nuclear liability and construction over the next 12 months.