AM Best

A.M. Best Affirms Credit Ratings of Barents Re Reinsurance Company, Inc.


Elí Sánchez
Senior Financial Analyst
+52 55 1102 2720, ext. 108

Alfonso Novelo
Senior Director, Analytics
+52 55 1102 2720, ext. 107

Christopher Sharkey
Manager, Public Relations
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5159

Jim Peavy
Director, Public Relations
+1 908 439 2200, ext. 5644


MEXICO CITY - DECEMBER 20, 2017 12:53 PM (EST)
A.M. 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.

The ratings reflect Barents Re’s balance sheet strength, which A.M. Best categorizes as strongest, as well as its strong operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management (ERM).

The rating affirmation reflects the company’s consistent risk-adjusted capitalization, profitability and geographical diversification. The ratings also recognize the company’s good ERM practices. Limiting the ratings is the still evolving regional composition of Barents Re’s portfolio and the uncertainty regarding the impact on the company’s level of profitability.

During 2016, Barents Re continued to reduce its business in Latin America and increased its participation in Europe, diminishing its premium volume while maintaining good profitability metrics. This was supported by its diversified and comprehensive reinsurance program placed among reinsurers with a good level of security, a key characteristic that Barents Re has adopted in order to prudently enter new business lines and regions. As the business portfolio contracted, results were also impacted by an increased loss ratio in financial lines and energy in Latin America, while European business, especially energy, continued to post strong performance. As of June 2017, underwriting performance has returned to historical levels. For year-end 2016, the company posted net income of USD19.3 million with a return on equity of 6%, despite the soft reinsurance market conditions.

The company’s risk-adjusted capitalization is categorized as strongest, as a result of a capital contribution in 2016 and positive bottom line results in the past five years. Exposures are adequately covered by its reinsurance program and the company’s net exposures to catastrophe events do not represent a significant portion of its reported surplus. This strengthens A.M. Best’s view of the company’s ERM practices, as it has been able to balance its risk appetite with risk-bearing capabilities, which is also reflected in a conservative investment portfolio.

The ratings are limited by the uncertainty of future underwriting income in markets where the company has expanded operations in previous years and plans to expand in the medium term.

Positive rating actions could take place if the company continues developing its ERM capabilities while providing sufficient evidence of its use in capital decisions and while maintaining a positive operating performance guided by underwriting performance and strong risk-adjusted capitalization, as measured by Best’s Capital Adequacy Model. Negative rating actions could occur if the regional shifting of the portfolio consistently produces negative results that affect the company’s overall profitability, resulting in deterioration of its capital base, or if by any other means risk-adjusted capital becomes non-supportive of current ratings.

The methodology used in determining these ratings is Best’s Credit Rating Methodology, which provides a comprehensive explanation of A.M. Best’s rating process and contains the different rating criteria employed in the rating process. Best’s Credit Rating Methodology can be found at

Key insurance criteria reports utilized:

  • Evaluating Country Risk (Version Oct 13, 2017)

  • Understanding Universal BCAR (Version Oct 13, 2017)

  • Catastrophe Analysis in A.M. Best Ratings (Version Oct 13, 2017)

  • Available Capital & Holding Company Analysis (Version Oct 13, 2017)

View a general description of the policies and procedures used to determine credit ratings. For information on the meaning of ratings, structure, voting and the committee process for determining the ratings and monitoring activities, please refer to Understanding Best’s Credit Ratings.

  • Previous Rating Date: Nov. 2, 2016.

  • Date of Financial Data Used: June 30, 2017.

This press release relates to rating(s) that have been published on A.M. Best’s website. For additional rating information relating to the release and pertinent disclosures, including details of the office responsible for issuing each of the individual ratings referenced in this release, please see A.M. Best’s Recent Rating Activity web page.

A.M. Best does not validate or certify the information provided by the client in order to issue a credit rating.

While the information obtained from the material source(s) is believed to be reliable, its accuracy is not guaranteed. A.M. Best does not audit the company’s financial records or statements, or otherwise independently verify the accuracy and reliability of the information; therefore, A.M. Best cannot attest as to the accuracy of the information provided.

A.M. Best’s credit ratings are independent and objective opinions, not statements of fact. A.M. Best is not an Investment Advisor, does not offer investment advice of any kind, nor does the company or its Ratings Analysts offer any form of structuring or financial advice. A.M. Best’s credit opinions are not recommendations to buy, sell or hold securities, or to make any other investment decisions. View our entire notice for complete details.

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AMB# Company Name
091083 Barents Re Reinsurance Company, Inc.