Flock is a London-based startup that has launched Europe’s first pay-as-you-fly drone insurance, underwritten by Allianz.
As an on-demand proposition it is targeted at commercial drone pilots and distributed though Flock Cover – a smartphone app. Policies start from GBP £5 for up to eight hours of personal accident liability and hull cover.
Inside the app, drone pilots can set up their profile and purchase fully compliant hull and liability insurance in a minute. The insurance policies are customisable to each flight by allowing pilots to tailor their policies by selecting a cover duration and public liability limit.
The major USP is Flock’s proprietary algorithm which aggregates and analyses localised data within the pilot’s flying area, and quantifying them to derive risk in real-time, which is also visible to the user immediately. The usage based nature of Flock’s pricing is a significant departure from the UK market’s current offering of flat-rate annual policies.
Flock also doubles as a safety tool which helps pilots assess real-time risks such as hyper-local weather conditions, nearby ground hazards and restricted airspaces. Finally, Flock offers a predictive risk analytics engine which enables pilots to assess likely weather and flight traffic risks up to 10 days in advance.
Flock has also expanded its offering by providing pay-as-you-fly insurance policies to commercial operators in training and there are also plans to roll these policies out for recreational pilots with policies starting from GBP £3.
Flock’s CEO Ed Leon Klinger has said of covering drone operations: “Questions around the safety of drones are becoming increasingly prominent, as illustrated by the UK government’s upcoming draft Drone Bill. Flock’s first product – the Flock Cover app – not only empowers pilots to fly safer, but also rewards lower-risk flights, helping to reduce claims and make the industry safer as a whole.”
Although Flock has pioneered drone cover in the UK, its challenge now is whether it can internationalise and expand throughout Europe amidst increasing regulatory scrutiny.