LONDON, Aug. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- Standard & Poor's today has assigned its
double-'A'-minus claims-paying ability rating to SPS Reassurance S.A. (SPS
RE). The rating is wholly-based upon explicit support received from the
immediate parent, AXA Reassurance S.A. (AXA Re, CPA double-'A'-minus), which
is itself a part of the AXA-UAP group in France.
MAJOR RATING FACTORS:
Explicit parental support - AXA Re has formally guaranteed its newly
established subsidiary, SPS RE, in respect of all the company's policyholder
obligations underwritten while the guarantee remains in force.
Business Review -- International reinsurance is defined as a core
strategic activity within the AXA-UAP group, and the AXA Re sub-group remains
a well-managed, technically competent, and leading force, not only within
France but also internationally. Although only incorporated as a reinsurance
operating company on July 1, 1997, SPS RE nonetheless, has a successful
20-year track-record as an underwriting agency, when it traded under the name
of Societe Parisienne de Souscription as a subsidiary of La Reunion Francaise,
which was acquired by UAP in 1995. During this time, what is now SPS RE,
established sound reinsurance relationships with many leading insurance
CAPITALIZATION -- With French franc (FFr) 348.1 million (US$70 million
approx.) of fully paid up capital, SPS RE currently enjoys a solvency ratio in
excess of 100%. In addition, the capital base and earnings are prudently
reinsured against substantial windstorm and other catastrophic losses.
Standard & Poor's expects SPS RE to underwrite some FFr440 million of
gross premiums in 1997, 25% proportional, 75% excess of loss. Of this
business, some 85% is likely to be property-related, 10% marine and 5% other
miscellaneous, with no facultative and virtually no retroceded business being
Concerning geographic diversification, premiums are expected to derive
approximately 42% from North America, 10% France, 18% rest of Europe, 13% Far
East, 6% Latin America and 11% other worldwide.
As premiums grow, prospective capitalization is expected to increase so as
to maintain a satisfactory risk-based position, with the solvency ratio always
being maintained well-above 50%, Standard & Poor's said. -- CreditWire
SOURCE Standard & Poor's CreditWire