Barents Group's new Subsidiary domiciled in Luxembourg gets an "A" financial strenght rating from AM Best

22 November 2016 — Daniela GHETU
Barents Group has established a new subsidiary company based in Luxembourg, as an underwriting entity for all international new and renewal business with immediate effect, the Group has announced on November 14th.

The new subsidiary, operating under the name of Barents Reinsurance S.A., benefits from the full financial support of its parent company in order to ensure its business continuity. Barents Reinsurance S.A. is a reinsurance carrier regulated by the Commissariat aux Assurances (Luxembourg) and complies with the Solvency II Directive.

The AM Best rating agency has assigned the new company, Barents Reinsurance S.A. (Barents Re Lux) (Luxembourg), a Financial Strength Rating of A (Excellent) and a Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating of "a". The outlook assigned to these Credit Ratings (ratings) is stable.

As far as the parent company is concerned, AM Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating of A (Excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating of "a" of Barents Re Reinsurance Company Inc. (Barents Re) (Panama City, Panama). The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) remains stable.

According to the rating agency, the ratings of Barents Re Lux primarily reflect its affiliation with and the support received from Barents Re Reinsurance Company Inc. (Barents Re Panama) (Panama), which owns 51% of the company's direct parent, BRM Barents SCA (Luxembourg). BRM Barents SCA is controlled by a general partner, which is under the control of Barents Re Panama.

AM Best has underlined that Barents Re Lux receives explicit support from Barents Re Panama under a quota share agreement through which a significant share of Barents Re Lux's premiums, losses and expenses are ceded to Barents Re Panama. In addition to the support from Barents Re Panama, the ratings also reflect Barents Re Lux's strong standalone risk-adjusted capitalization, which benefits from low net underwriting leverage. The company has a relatively small capital base, but A.M. Best expects Barents Re Lux's shareholders to inject further capital to support future growth.

Barents Re Panama started writing a portfolio of European facultative reinsurance business in 2011, and this portfolio will be renewed into Barents Re Lux. Going forward, Barents Re Lux will write both non-life and life reinsurance, with non-life facultative business comprising approximately two-thirds of premium income and the remainder consisting of non-life and life treaty business. The company is expected to write a diversified book of energy, property and engineering, bonds, general aviation, financial services and other reinsurance risks with a focus on Europe.

In A.M. Best's opinion, profitable growth in the very competitive European reinsurance market will be challenging for Barents Re Lux, particularly in view of its limited business profile. However, on a net basis, Barents Re Lux's performance will be protected by its comprehensive reinsurance program.

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