News Column

A.M. Best Downgrades and Places Ratings of Companion Property and Casualty Insurance Company and Its Subsidiaries Under Review With Negative Implications

August 29, 2014



OLDWICK, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- A.M. Besthas downgraded the financial strength ratings to B++ (Good) from A (Excellent) and the issuer credit ratings to “bbb” from “a” and placed the ratings under review with negative implications for Companion Property and Casualty Insurance Company, and its subsidiaries, Companion Commercial Insurance Companyand Companion Specialty Insurance Company (District of Columbia), collectively referred to as Companion Property and Casualty Group, which are ultimately owned by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of South Carolina (BCBSSC). All companies are domiciled in Columbia, SC, unless otherwise specified.

These rating actions follow the disclosure that BCBSSC has entered into a definitive agreement to sell Companion Property and Casualty Group to Enstar Group Limited (Enstar). The downgrade and under review with negative implications status reflects the deterioration in the group’s risk-adjusted capitalization that has occurred through the second quarter of 2014, as well as the removal of rating enhancement that was afforded group members as a result of the explicit and implicit support provided by BCBSSC. Enstar and its Torus subsidiaries are assessing opportunities for policy renewals of Companion business into Torus or other non-affiliated insurers and expect to operate the orderly run-off of the historical reserves largely within its property/casualty legacy business. The ratings of BCBSSC remain unchanged as the company continues to report favorable operating and net income trends on its core health business, earnings diversification and strong risk-adjusted capital.

The ratings will remain under review until the transaction is closed.

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 www.ambest.com/ratings/methodology.

A.M. Best Company is the world's oldest and most authoritative insurance rating and information source. For more information, visit www.ambest.com.

Copyright © 2014 by A.M. Best Company, Inc.ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.





A.M. Best

Michael Russo–P/C, 908-439-2200, ext. 5372

Senior Financial Analyst

michael.russo@ambest.com

or

Jennifer Afriyie–L/H, 908-439-2200, ext. 5203

Financial Analyst

jennifer.afriyie@ambest.com

or

Christopher Sharkey, 908-439-2200, ext. 5159

Manager, Public Relations

christopher.sharkey@ambest.com

or

Jim Peavy, 908-439-2200, ext. 5644

Assistant Vice President, Public Relations

james.peavy@ambest.com

Source: A.M. Best


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