SEPTEMBER 28, 2011 12:00 AM (EDT)

A.M. Best Upgrades Issuer Credit Ratings of Trisura Guarantee Insurance Co. & 6436978 Canada Ltd.; Revises Outlook to Positive


CONTACTS:
 
Jacqalene Catrino Lentz
Senior Financial Analyst
(908) 439-2200, ext. 5762
jacqalene.catrino@ambest.com

Jeffrey Mango, CPA
Assistant Vice President
(908) 439-2200, ext. 5204
jeffrey.mango@ambest.com


Carole Lovell
Public Relations Associate
(908) 439-2200, ext. 5445
carole.lovell@ambest.com

Jim Peavy
Assistant Vice President, Public Relations
(908) 439-2200, ext. 5644
james.peavy@ambest.com

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

OLDWICK, N.J. - SEPTEMBER 28, 2011 12:00 AM (EDT)
A.M. Best Co. has upgraded the issuer credit rating (ICR) to "bbb+" from "bbb" and affirmed the financial strength rating of B++ (Good) of Trisura Guarantee Insurance Company (Trisura). Concurrently, A.M. Best has upgraded the ICR to "bb+" from "bb" of 6436978 Canada Limited (Canada Limited), the non-operating holding company of Trisura. The outlook for all ratings has been revised to positive from stable. Both companies are domiciled in Toronto, Ontario.

The ICR upgrades reflect Trisura's solid risk-adjusted capital position, continued trend of favorable earnings and commitment to the company‘s strategy. The positive outlook reflects A.M. Best's expectation that Trisura will continue to produce favorable operating trends, while maintaining a solid level of risk-adjusted capitalization.

These positive rating factors are derived from Trisura's consistent operating profitability driven by favorable underwriting results and a steady stream of investment income. As a result, pre-tax operating returns on revenue and equity have increased and overall risk-adjusted capitalization has improved. Although Trisura's operations are relatively new to the market, the executive management team includes several experienced industry professionals, who together previously worked in various capacities at other successful Canadian property/casualty insurance companies. Their expertise and depth of knowledge keeps them committed to using the broker distribution channel to promote their products.

Partially offsetting these positive rating factors are Trisura's elevated underwriting leverage, increased competition, continued soft market conditions in the liability and fidelity lines, as well as the impact of a weak economy and the reduced government spending on some parts of the construction industry in Canada. A.M. Best believes that challenging economic conditions, along with soft market conditions, will continue to require Trisura's management to balance strong operating results with reasonable growth targets.

The principal methodology used in determining these ratings is Best's Credit Rating Methodology - Global Life and Non-Life Insurance Edition, which provides a comprehensive explanation of A.M. Best's rating process and highlights the different rating criteria employed. Additional key criteria utilized include: "Risk Management and the Rating Process for Insurance Companies"; "Understanding BCAR for Canadian Property/Casualty Insurers"; and "A.M. Best's Ratings & the Treatment of Debt". Methodologies can be found at www.ambest.com/ratings/methodology.

Founded in 1899, A.M. Best Company is the world's oldest and most authoritative insurance rating and information source.

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