TheVirgin Galacticspaceship which crashed on Friday was insured against losses totaling around $40-50 million and the lead underwriter wasAIG, insurance sources said on Monday.

AIGdeclined to comment.

British insurance and brokerage services provider Jardine Lloyd Thompson confirmed that it was the broker on the deal.

"We act on behalf ofVirgin Galacticand are providing every assistance, as is appropriate in these tragic circumstances," JLT said in a statement.


Virgin Galacticis the fledgling space tourism company of billionaire British entrepreneurRichard Branson.

The spacecraft crashed inCalifornia's Mojave Desert during a test flight, killing one pilot and injuring the other.

The estimated insured losses are similar to those for the unmanned U.S. supply rocket which exploded last week.

But theVirgin Galacticspaceship was insured under an aviation "hull and liability" policy, in contrast to the supply rocket which was insured in the space market, insurance specialists said.

The Lloyd's ofLondoninsurance market plays a key role in aviation insurance, with gross written premium at Lloyd's totaling more than $1 billion in 2013, according to theInternational Underwriting Association.

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