Swiss Re, Baidu partnership to put breaks on autonomous driving risks

Zurich-based reinsurance company Swiss Re has partnered with Chinese tech giant Baidu to provide risk management expertise and insurance products for Baidu’s autonomous driving business.

Autonomous driving poses new challenges to the insurance industry, Swiss Re explained, including rapid technological upgrades, increasingly diversified risks and limitation of data availability.

According to Swiss Re, the partnership with Baidu aims to further develop the autonomous driving industry and create a new industry paradigm. It allows reinsurers, such as Swiss Re, to tailor autonomous driving insurance products to meet the needs of technology companies.

The first focus of the partnership was the launch of autonomous valet parking insurance, the industry’s first ever insurance solution for Apollo Valet Parking (AVP) – an automated valet parking product designed by Baidu Apollo. Future ventures include risk management research and insurance innovation for autonomous driving computing platforms, intelligent cockpits, robotaxi’s, and other automated driving products.

Russell Higginbotham, CEO Reinsurance Asia & regional president Asia, said, “By combining our respective risk knowledge and insights, we hope to jointly explore and develop innovative products and solutions, catalyse the transformation of the autonomous driving value chain and further advance the mobility ecosystem.”

Andrea Keller, head of automotive & mobility solutions at Swiss Re, added, “Together with our partner Baidu, we analyse how automated cars perceive their surroundings and how they process that information and respond to it.

“Our goal is to understand how such vehicles behave differently than human-driven ones and quantify these differences. Ultimately, we aim to bring motor insurance products to the next level of innovation.”

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