A.M. Best Affirms Ratings of Wilton Re Holdings Limited and Its Subsidiaries
April 25, 2014
(Wilton, CT) A.M. Best has affirmed the financial strength rating of A (Excellent) and issuer credit ratings (ICR) of “a” of Wilton Reinsurance Bermuda Ltd., Wilton Reassurance Company (Minneapolis, MN), Texas Life Insurance Company (Waco, TX), Heritage Union Life Insurance Company (headquartered in Wilton, CT) and Wilton Reassurance Life Company of New York (Rye Brook, NY), collectively referred to as Wilton Re.
Additionally, A.M. Best has affirmed the ICRs of “bbb” of Wilton Re Holdings Limited and Wilton Re Finance, LLC (Wilton Re Finance) (Delaware) as well as the debt rating of “bbb” on the $300 million 5.875% senior unsecured notes due 2033 of Wilton Re Finance. The notes are unconditionally guaranteed by its parent, Wilton Re U.S. Holdings, Inc. (Delaware) and the ultimate parent, Wilton Re Holdings Limited. A.M. Best notes that Wilton Re Holdings Limited’s adjusted financial leverage and interest coverage are within A.M. Best’s expectations. The outlook for all ratings is stable. The full press release can be accessed here.
The rating affirmations for Wilton Re reflect its solid risk-adjusted capitalization level, its recent increased transaction activity, strong operating earnings and high quality balance sheet and liability structure. Wilton Re has grown its business through an acquisition-oriented strategy with an emphasis on in-force solutions, primary insurance and business solutions for both smaller and larger organizations. This focus has contributed to its favorable operating earnings and efficiencies in recent years. This trend continues in 2014 with the recently announced acquisitions of Continental Assurance Company from CNA Financial Corporation and Conseco Life Insurance Company from CNO Financial Group, Inc. A.M. Best expects Wilton Re to remain adequately capitalized as these new transactions will be funded through excess capital deployment.
The company also announced this year that Wilton Re Holdings Limited will be acquired by the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB). Following the acquisition, A.M. Best expects no variation in Wilton Re’s operating profile or senior management.
Chris C. Stroup, Chairman and CEO, said, “The CPPIB acquisition strengthens our proposition for clients and positions Wilton Re for significant growth. CPPIB is a ‘AAA’ rated, long-term investor with significant capital resources that will be deployed to expand Wilton Re’s industry-leading in force solutions and new business offerings to the middle market. We believe this acquisition will enhance the scale of the Wilton Re platform and allow us to continue to assist our clients in the U.S. life insurance industry with their most complex, strategic issues.”