Fitch Provides Additional Comments on PartnerRe-AXIS Capital Management

CHICAGO--()--Fitch Ratings continues to expect the capitalization of the combined PartnerRe Ltd. (PRE) and AXIS Capital Holdings Ltd. (AXIS) to be within its rating guidelines based on additional information reviewed by Fitch following the agency's non-rating action commentary published on May 4, 2015.

Fitch has taken no rating actions on either PRE or AXIS as a result of the revised PRE-AXIS amalgamation agreement that adds an $11.50 per share dividend to be paid to PRE's shareholders immediately prior to closing. This enhanced merger term was in response to a rival bid by EXOR S.p.A.'s (EXOR) that PRE rejected.

Fitch expects the combined PRE-AXIS to maintain moderate operating and financial leverage ratios based on pro forma projections that consider the one-time special dividend to PRE shareholders and planned post-merger share repurchase activities. Pro forma net premiums written-to-shareholders' equity is expected to be 0.8x with a financial leverage ratio of approximately 16% and debt plus preferred equity to total capital of about 24%. Fitch would have a negative view of any additional capital reductions that significantly increased these metrics for the combined organization.

For additional comments on the PartnerRe-AXIS combination see Fitch's non-rating action commentaries published on May 4, 2015 and April 15, 2015 and rating action commentaries published on Jan. 26, 2015.

Additional information is available at 'www.fitchratings.com'.

Applicable Criteria and Related Research:

--'Insurance Rating Methodology' (Sept. 4, 2014).

Applicable Criteria and Related Research:

Insurance Rating Methodology

http://www.fitchratings.com/creditdesk/reports/report_frame.cfm?rpt_id=756650

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Contacts

Fitch Ratings
Contact for PRE:
Primary Analyst
Brian C. Schneider, CPA, CPCU, ARe
Senior Director
+1 312-606-2321
Fitch Ratings, Inc.
70 W. Madison Street
Chicago, IL 60602
or
Secondary Analyst
Christopher A. Grimes, CFA
Director
+1 312-368-3263
or
Contact for AXIS:
Primary Analyst
Douglas M. Pawlowski, CFA
Senior Director
+1 312-368-2054
or
Secondary Analyst
Martha M. Butler, CFA
Senior Director
+1 312-368-3191
or
Media Relations:
Alyssa Castelli, +1 212-908-0540
alyssa.castelli@fitchratings.com
Elizabeth Fogerty, +1 212-908-0526
elizabeth.fogerty@fitchratings.com

Contacts

Fitch Ratings
Contact for PRE:
Primary Analyst
Brian C. Schneider, CPA, CPCU, ARe
Senior Director
+1 312-606-2321
Fitch Ratings, Inc.
70 W. Madison Street
Chicago, IL 60602
or
Secondary Analyst
Christopher A. Grimes, CFA
Director
+1 312-368-3263
or
Contact for AXIS:
Primary Analyst
Douglas M. Pawlowski, CFA
Senior Director
+1 312-368-2054
or
Secondary Analyst
Martha M. Butler, CFA
Senior Director
+1 312-368-3191
or
Media Relations:
Alyssa Castelli, +1 212-908-0540
alyssa.castelli@fitchratings.com
Elizabeth Fogerty, +1 212-908-0526
elizabeth.fogerty@fitchratings.com