Platinum Underwritings Holdings is the beneficiary of a continued positive ratings outlook from Standard & Poor’s with a possible future two-notch upgrade after it combines with RenaissanceRe. The news comes as RenRe gears up to close its $1.9 billion acquisition of the Bermuda-based multiline reinsurer, potentially in early March.

Standard & Poor’s said it is keeping its “A-” financial strength and counterparty credit ratings on CreditWatch positive for Platinum’s operating subsidiaries. In addition, it has has maintained its “BBB” long-term counterparty credit rating on Platimum, on CreditWatch, with positive implications.

S&P’s latest assessment maintains initial ratings issued in late November, when RenRe’s $1.9 billion cash-stock deal for Platinum was first announced.

Standard & Poor’s credit analyst Taoufik Gharib said in prepared remarks that the continued ratings outlook for Platinum “reflects the potential support we believe the company will receive as an important part of RenaissanceRe’s specialty strategy and the overall RenaissanceRe group.”

Gharib said that keeping Platinum on CreditWatch with positive implications reflects “the potential improvement in credit quality of up to two notches created by becoming part a part of RenaissanceRe’s specialty strategy upon consummation of the proposed acquisition within the next three months.”

RenRe said earlier this month that it hopes to close its purchase of Platinum on March 2, assuming Platinum’s shareholders vote in favor of the deal when they meet on Feb. 27.

Last November, after the deal was announced, Standard & Poor’s affirmed the “AA-” financial strength ratings for RenRe’s operating subsidiaries and its “A+” financial strength rating on RenaissanceRe Specialty Risks Ltd.

Source: Standard & Poor’s

Topics Mergers & Acquisitions