AM Best

A.M. Best Assigns Ratings to Investors Trust Assurance SPC



Richard Baldwin

(908) 439-2200, ext. 5664

William Pargeans

(908) 439-2200, ext. 5359

Public Relations

Jim Peavy

(908) 439-2200, ext. 5644

Rachelle Morrow

(908) 439-2200, ext. 5378


OLDWICK, N.J. - SEPTEMBER 30, 2009 12:00 AM (EDT)
A.M. Best Co. has assigned a financial strength rating of B++ (Good) and issuer credit rating of "bbb+" to Investors Trust Assurance SPC (ITA) (Cayman Islands). The assigned outlook is stable.

ITA focuses on selling U.S. dollar and Euro denominated unit-linked insurance plans to middle class consumers through a distribution network of independent financial advisors in Latin America and Southeast Asia. The unit-linked plans are characterized by regular contributions spanning many years with relatively high sales loads and surrender charges that are comparable to those of its competitors. The unit linked plans are designed to allow the plan holder to access name-brand investment products in stable currencies and to build up assets on a tax deferred basis. ITA is a closely held company.

The ratings of ITA consider its profitable operations and A.M. Best's opinion that the company is well capitalized relative to its net liabilities. ITA has relatively limited investment and insurance risks because customer assets are held in segregated accounts, and investment contracts carry a limited death benefit. The ratings also acknowledge the company's network of independent financial advisors in Latin America and Southeast Asia, its seven-year operating history since inception, management's prior history of relevant investment marketing experience and A.M. Best's opinion that ITA's business plan to steadily grow contract placements is reasonable.

Partially offsetting these positive factors are the correlation of new policy sales with the performance of equity market indices and the intense competition with several well known insurance companies that provide life insurance and similar asset management services. The ratings also recognize the special risks related to international compliance standards, the reliance on the market value of assets under management for a sizable fraction of revenue and the lack of sophisticated policies regarding investment of company surplus assets and maintaining appropriate levels of risk-adjusted capitalization as the company develops new products.

For Best's Credit Ratings, an overview of the rating process and rating methodologies, please visit Best's Ratings & Analysis.

The principal methodologies used in determining these ratings, including any additional methodologies and factors that may have been considered, can be found at Best's Credit Rating Methodology.

Founded in 1899, A.M. Best Company is a global full-service credit rating organization dedicated to serving the financial and health care service industries, including insurance companies, banks, hospitals and health care system providers.

Related Companies

For information about each company, including the Best's Credit Reports, group members (where applicable) and news stories, click on the company name. An additional purchase may be required.

AMB# Company Name
075811 Investors Trust Assurance SPC