Business Insurance for Renewable Energy and Cleantech Companies

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NWBIB recognise the fast developing world Cleantech companies work in and their constant need to innovate, often to satisfy funding requirements of key investors.

It is easy to focus on this objective without considering the increasing risks and liabilities, which could have catastrophic consequences in the event of a claim.

We have over 25 years’ experience of working with technology companies especially in the energy sector, means we are ideally placed to advise clients on many insurance aspects and to structure suitable insurance programmes for these, with the flexibility to adapt to evolving requirements and emerging insurance risks.

Commonly overlooked insurance risks

1. Investor Expectation

All investors have expectations of making an eventual return. Investment agreements can contain various warranties and indemnities which a company will sign up to; are you comfortable with the extent to which these are currently insured, or can be insured?

2. Contractual Liabilities

All businesses need to identify grey areas in contracts that will invalidate their insurance protection. NWBIB will help to either produce a revised insurance programme to cover newly identified risks or, potentially, a variation in the agreement indemnities to ensure that these concerns are minimised.

3. Intellectual Property

It is vital that Cleantech companies have a clear understanding of Intellectual Property liabilities and how these are dealt with in insurance programmes. Both investor expectation and contractual liabilities will have a focus on this and expect you not to infringe others intellectual property rights.

4. Cyber Risks

These are fast becoming a 21st Century risk which Cleantech businesses need to consider. Your investment agreement makes you responsible for breaches of Data Protection legislation. See our CyberRisks page for details on how we can help.

The 2015 Cleantech Group Report– Insurance protection does not match company risk and ambition!

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A SURVEY OF 300 CLEANTECH GROUP EXECUTIVES revealed huge gaps in their insurance protection compared with their business risks and ambitions. This not only increases their own business risk but also the investment of their backers.

The key findings were:

Click here to view details of the report.

Our solution

Our approach to structuring an appropriate insurance programme is:

  1. Begin with a detailed risk review – encompassing much of the concerns highlighted in the Cleantech Group report
  2. Explain what can and cannot be insured and construct an insurance programme around these

In our experience and backed up by this Report, the majority of Cleantech businesses are unaware of the common failings in their insurance programmes but which would be identified by following these two steps. Commonly, the Key Risks are:

a. Key Suppliers

Your inability to deliver could mean lost income and could also result in customer litigation. The loss of production and/or manufacturing capability can easily impact on businesses and contracts with clients where there is reliance on, often overseas suppliers.

b. Marine Insurance

Managing this insurance reduces the potential for agreement/investor litigation. A hugely significant supply chain and pilot project risks. Rather than relying on suppliers or freight forwarders to cover this you can take control of insurance settlement for goods lost in transit, which you may have paid for. Additionally any consequential losses can be insured.

c. Cyber Risks

As the Cleantech Group report shows, the Global nature of cleantech development creates worldwide exposure which may not have been seen or considered, before. As illustrated through Cyber Threats, the damage done to a business’s reputation is immeasurable.

d. Operational Risks

Once your business running and generating income, all operational risks will need to be covered , to ensure your business is not put at risk Traditional insurance programmes will not cover risks associated with breakdown or loss of power. We can arrange insurance to more sophisticated protection against, for example, Breakdown or Loss of Power exposures.

e. Directors & Officers Liability

Given the nature and operation of Renewable Energy businesses, there is a significant chance that a claim against Company Directors will arise from either bodily injury or damage to property, an often excluded cover.

NWBIB only offers Directors & Officers insurance policies which cover both of these risks.

How can NWBIB help you?:

Emerging Businesses x Emerging Risks = Increased Insurance Needs Solution = NWBIB

If you would like to know more about our approach to Renewable Energy Business Insurance Risks, please contact Rory McPhail on 01223 792269