TRUST Re, 1H2018: 13% y-o-y growth in premiums and claims settled, exceeding USD 300 million

21 October 2018 — Daniela GHETU
TRUST Re has announced a 13% y-o-y growth in premiums for 1H2018 and a combined ratio of 96.5%, down from 98.9% a year ago, reaffirming its sound and steady reputation among the company's long list of loyal customers.

The reinsurer also stated that it has settled claims exceeding USD 300 million, of which large claims exceeded USD 130 million this year, also benefitting from a strong and reliable retro program with its internationally 'A' rated partners.

TRUST Re's statement comes after the announcement of A. M. Best rating agency's decision to downgrade the Bahraini headquartered reinsurer's Financial Strength Rating to B++ (Good) from A- (Excellent) with the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating to "bbb+" from "a-." Both ratings remain under review with negative implications. The official release states: "The ratings reflect Trust Re's balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as very strong, as well as its adequate operating performance, neutral business profile, and marginal enterprise risk management (ERM)."

The reason behind the downgrade decision, as stated by A. M. Best, consists of TRUST Re's failure to deliver audited financial statements for the year-end 31 December 2017 in time, which in the agency's opinion puts a shade of uncertainty regarding the financial position of Trust Re. "The ratings are expected to remain under review pending publication of Trust Re's audited financial statements for year-end 2017 and A. M. Best's subsequent assessment of the rating fundamentals of Trust Re," the agency said in its press release.

In response, TRUST Re explained, "due to the review of a large number of transactions in the previously discussed transactional and financial auditing process, the completion of the external audit has significantly exceeded the time we had originally estimated. This has resulted in a further delay in releasing the audited financial statements for the year ended December 31, 2017. The work with our stakeholders to address these matters is ongoing. We will announce updates immediately as the situation develops, once we are close to the completion of our audits."

Commenting on the current situation, the reinsurer added: "In spite of the short-term challenge this downgrade poses, with our strong, qualified team we continue to have confidence in the company's future, knowing that we were previously able to achieve and maintain the A- rating while growing and diversifying our portfolio substantially. We enjoy solid and strong support from our Shareholders and Board of Directors, and our historical performance has earned us a stable and trusted reputation and solid level of confidence amongst our long list of loyal customers."

Trust International Insurance and Reinsurance Company B.S.C. (c) 'Trust Re' is a closed joint stock company registered in the Kingdom of Bahrain, with authorized capital of USD 500 million, and issued and paid-up capital of USD 250 million. The Company is comprised of over 280 employees located in its Bahrain Head Office and Branch Offices in Cyprus and Labuan, Malaysia. TRUST Re also has a Representative Office in Morocco, operating under the Casablanca Finance City and a liaison office in India.

TRUST Re's geographical scope includes the Middle East, Africa, Asia, CEE, SEE, Russia, and CIS countries, providing reinsurance protection to many leading direct insurance companies in its geographical area of operation, in the form of annual treaties on proportional and non-proportional bases, with a sizable underwriting capacity.

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