US entertainment insurance broker AON/Albert G. Ruben is making an aggressive push into the Asian market to tap into the region’s booming production industries.
The company, which hired former cineFinance president Fred Milstein as managing director last year, already insures Hollywood productions shooting in Asia, such as Sony’s Jackie Chan-starrer The Karate Kid, and is planning to roll out it services to independent Asian producers.
In addition to basic production insurance, the company offers a range of services such as corporate, errors & omissions, weather and professional liability insurance. It has expanded into risk management consultancy and has a growing business in so-called “disgrace insurance” for film stars and other celebrities who run into trouble.
“This range of coverage has been regarded as exotic in Asia, but is becoming more important as the business matures and the numbers start to grow,” Milstein says.
Milstein is also looking at putting together a completion guarantee facility that may be tailor-made for Asia where many productions are too small to justify paying for a bond.
The company already has a representative, Morrin Lu, based in AON’s Beijing office and plans to work with other AON offices around the region in cities such as Singapore, Hong Kong and Shanghai.
CineFinance previously bonded big-budget Asian pictures such as Red Cliff (pictured) but shut down in response to the global economic downturn last year.