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Aon Media Center

Blockchain technology brings crop insurance to paddy field farmers
Aon, Etherisc and Oxfam in Sri Lanka collaborate to give thousands of Sri Lankan small holder farmers access to blockchain-enabled micro-insurance

LONDON (Oct. 29, 2018) – Aon plc, the leading global professional services firm providing a broad range of risk, retirement and health solutions; Oxfam in Sri Lanka, an organization working to alleviate poverty; and Etherisc, a leading InsureTech company, today announced a joint program to deliver micro-insurance to thousands of small holder paddy field farmers in Sri Lanka through blockchain technology.

“By bringing micro-insurance, with very small premiums, to the hard working paddy field rice farmers, we are empowering economic and human possibility,” said Hugo Wegbrans, chief broking officer Europe, Middle East and Africa, Aon. “This is not about making traditional insurance smaller, this is about empowering farmers to manage risk in order to thrive and helping them to recover when they face adversity.”

Oxfam has been supporting the delivery of affordable agricultural insurance to Sri Lankan small holder farmers for several years. With Aon and Etherisc, the program will now utilize blockchain technology to power efficiency and transparency and be expanded to allow for greater access.  

A major barrier to entry for farmers is a lack of affordable and reliable insurance products, and understanding about how insurance will help them survive and when it will pay out. By leveraging blockchain technology it is intended to automate parametric insurance products, transforming and simplifying the claims process to the point that the farmer would not need to submit a claim and the insurer would not need to send a claims adjuster in the field.

Michiel Berende, Inclusive Insurance Lead, Etherisc added, “For low income households a loss event is a particularly delicate and difficult time, and they need a claims process that is fast, simple and clearly understood. With blockchain technology a payment can be made immediately, eliminating the need, in some circumstances, for farmers without access to traditional regulated loan facilities to go to a moneylender or loan shark. Payment triggers will be mutually agreed upon and monitored by external data providers where blockchain makes that data more secure and reliable.”

This project is designed to offer Oxfam in Sri Lanka and their local partners, a completely automated index insurance product, which should provide low-cost agriculture insurance, with a higher percent of premiums being used for claims payment and immediate pay-out.

Bojan Kolundzija, Country Director, Oxfam, added, “We have been able to establish a solid base to support farmers in Sri Lanka. We have been educating the farmers, building trust and creating lasting solutions. This advancement, is significant as we are now able to expand our reach by applying the latest technology available, which should also allow us to deliver more real and lasting results.”

ENDS

About Aon
Aon plc (NYSE:AON) Aon is a leading global professional services firm providing a broad range of risk, retirement and health solutions. Our 50,000 colleagues in 120 countries empower results for clients by using proprietary data and analytics to deliver insights that reduce volatility and improve performance.

Aon has five specific global solution lines: Commercial Risk Solutions, Reinsurance Solutions, Retirement Solutions, Health Solutions and Data & Analytic Services.

Follow Aon on Twitter: https://twitter.com/Aon_plc
Visit the Aon Newsroom: http://www.aon.com/home/newsroom/index.html

About Oxfam

Oxfam in Sri Lanka (OiSL): At Oxfam, we work towards a Sri Lanka where everyone lives in dignity and peace, enjoying prosperity and justice. The organization helps people build better futures for themselves, hold the powerful accountable, and save lives in disasters. Oxfam’s mission is to tackle the root causes of poverty and create lasting solutions. https://sri-lanka.oxfam.org/, Facebook.com/OxfamSriLanka, @OxfamSriLanka

About Etherisc

Etherisc develops a protocol for decentralized insurance apps, creating an alternative to traditional insurance. The company's mission is to make the purchase and sale of insurance more efficient—reducing operational costs, increasing transparency, and democratizing access to reinsurance investments. https://etherisc.com/. @etherisc Telegram: https://t.me/etherisc_community

Media Contact:
Aon contact: Cybil Rose; +1.312.755.3537; cybil.rose@kemperlesnik.com
Etherisc contact: Saul Hudson: +1.786.562.1683



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