A.M. Best has upgraded the issuer credit rating (ICR) to “a+” from “a” and affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A (Excellent) of Seven Seas Insurance Company, Inc. (Riviera Beach, Fla). The outlook for the ICR has been revised to stable from positive, while the outlook for the FSR is stable.
Best said the rating upgrade reflects Seven Seas’ “outstanding underwriting and operating performance, excellent capitalization and the synergies gained from its effective low-cost distribution platform and preferential access to those it insures via the customer network of its affiliate, Tropical Shipping and Construction Company Limited (Tropical Shipping).” Tropical Shipping is one of the largest transporters of containerized cargo to the Caribbean region and the Bahamas from the United States and Canada. The ratings also acknowledge management’s specialty underwriting expertise within the ocean and inland marine cargo market, as well as its strong client relationships, effective loss control and risk management techniques.
Partially offsetting these positive rating factors is the company’s lack of surplus growth due to sizeable annual dividend payments to the parent, including an extraordinary dividend payment in 2013. Despite these payments, the company’s risk-adjusted capitalization remains strong due to a conservative invested asset base coupled with exceptional operating results.
Seven Seas and Tropical Shipping are ultimately owned by Saltchuk Resources, Inc., a Seattle-based holding company with a wide ranging set of subsidiaries focused on maritime operations and logistics.
Source: A.M. Best Co.