First State-Run PSU to Support Indian Drone Ecosystem

TropoGo, witnessed the issuance of India’s First Beyond Visual Line of Sight Drone Insurance to Drone Start-up Asteria Aerospace, underwritten by National Insurance.

New Delhi, August 2020:

To safeguard the risk of any loss or damage to third-party due to any accident during the test flights National Insurance, a state-owned General insurance company has issued India’s First BVLOS Drone Insurance to Asteria Aerospace, a drone manufacturer and operator, through Itus Insurance Brokers utilizing TropoGo Platform.

The BVLOS insurance coverage is exclusively designed for Asteria’s DGCA approved consortium to conduct 100 hours of Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) test flights in pre-defined airspace approved by DGCA. It is also the first time that any PSU insurance company has collaborated with drone start-up and a FinTech start-up to come up with innovative and fit-for-purpose insurance.

BVLOS Drone Operations are the next frontier in drone-technology with a promise to deliver multiple mass benefit use cases like Agriculture, Disaster Management, Healthcare, Infrastructure monitoring, and many more.

DGCA has approved 20 drone consortia including Asteria Aerospace for conducting BVLOS Drone trials in a sandboxed environment. Asteria plans to conduct BVLOS test flights in an airspace located about 2 hours north of Bengaluru and experiment use cases such as aerial survey of pipelines, railways, and roadways, among other things. Observations & outcomes of these experimental flights will be submitted to DGCA to draft policies and regulations for safe and routine BVLOS drone operations.

According to Sandipan Sen, Founder of TropoGo, “It’s a matter of pride for us to get into a co-innovation journey with Asteria Aerospace, Itus Insurance Brokers and National Insurance, a brand trusted since 1906.

With this collaboration, TropoGo is well-positioned to support every insurance need of India’s thriving drone ecosystem, be it Line of Sight Operations or Beyond Visual Line of Sight experiments. We will continue to collaborate and co-innovate to bring Smart, Affordable & Fit for Purpose Financial products for the Indian Drone community”

Neel Mehta, co-founder of Asteria Aerospace, said, “Asteria is proud to lead the way for BVLOS drone operations in India, and we are glad to have the support of TropoGo and National Insurance in this journey. This is an exciting time for the drone industry in India and BVLOS flight operations will unlock many critical as well as emerging use cases for drones.”

Shubhankar Pain, Chief Regional Manager of National Insurance said “ We have been seeing increasing Drone adoption in the last few months, be it COVID Control, AMPHAN Disaster Management or Locusts Control. We can also see “Beyond Visual Line of Sight” operations will further accelerate the innovation especially for Medicine delivery and in Agriculture in the coming years. When we have been approached with the Insurance request for the Asteria Aerospace consortium, DunzoAir Consortium we were very happy with their depth of knowledge on drone operations risks and decided to extend our support to the dynamic Indian Drone Community. We will keep on monitoring the space and will continue to extend our support to the vibrant start-up fraternity for Insurtech Innovations”.

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