Lloyd’s insures missing Cardiff City footballer for £16mn

Cardiff City Football Club has £16mn ($20.9mn) of personal accident (PA) insurance at Lloyd’s to cover players including Emiliano Sala, who is feared to have died in a plane crash over the English Channel, The Insurance Insider has learned.

The plane disappeared from air traffic controllers’ radars near Alderney in the Channel Islands on 21 January, as the Argentinian striker was travelling from Nantes to his new club.

The search for the missing plane has now been called off, with Guernsey harbourmaster Captain David Barker calling the footballer’s chances of survival “extremely remote”.

The Insurance Insider understands the club’s PA policy is led by China Re Syndicate 2088 and brokered by Miller.

Sala’s name would have only just been added to the Premier League club’s policy, with the transfer from Nantes being completed on 19 January for a club record fee of around £15mn.

Sources believe that loss of revenue from sponsorship arrangements and shirt sales would be likely to take the claim to the full £16mn limit.

It is understood that China Re’s lead line represents around 16 percent of the total limit, with other Lloyd’s insurers set to pay the rest of the claim.

This form of specialist PA insurance is typically written in the wholesale accident and health (A&H) market and covers sports stars, actors and business leaders in the event of injury or death.

Being a passenger on a plane that crashes is a peril that is covered in a standard Lloyd’s A&H policy wording.

Sala was being flown in a US-registered Piper PA-46-310P Malibu aircraft when it disappeared off the coast of Guernsey. The aircraft is also insured in the London market.

High-profile contingency and A&H claims in London in recent years have included the death of Carrie Fisher in December 2016. Disney insured the Star Wars actress for $50mn at Lloyd’s.

George Michael’s death in 2017 led to a payout of £3mn, while the actor Will Smith bought Lloyd’s cover for a bungee jump into the Grand Canyon in September. He was insured for $200mn.

China Re declined to comment. Cardiff City had not responded to a request for comment at the time of publication and a Miller representative had no immediate comment.