AMSTERDAM--(BUSINESS WIRE)--AM Best has affirmed the Financial Strength Rating of A- (Excellent) and the Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating of “a-” of UnipolSai Assicurazioni S.p.A. (UnipolSai) (Italy). The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) is stable.
The ratings reflect UnipolSai’s balance sheet strength, which AM Best categorises as strong, as well as its strong operating performance, neutral business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management.
UnipolSai’s balance sheet strength is underpinned by risk-adjusted capitalisation, which AM Best expects to be maintained at least at the very strong level, as measured by Best’s Capital Adequacy Ratio (BCAR). Factors also supporting balance sheet strength are the company’s low reinsurance dependence, good internal capital generation and good financial flexibility. An offsetting factor is the concentration of UnipolSai’s investment portfolio in Italian government bonds, which exposes its risk-adjusted capitalisation to potential volatility.
UnipolSai’s holding company, Unipol Gruppo S.p.A. (Unipol Gruppo), has a neutral impact on the ratings. Since February 2018, the group has rationalised and limited its exposure to the Italian banking sector through the creation of UnipolRec, which holds non-performing loans at a significant write-down to gross value. Additionally, it has agreed to the sale of its subsidiary, Unipol Banca S.p.A., to BPER Banca S.p.A., further reducing its exposure to banking assets.
AM Best expects UnipolSai’s operating performance to remain strong, driven by good underwriting profitability, particularly from UnipolSai’s non-motor operations, and a positive, albeit limited, contribution from the investment portfolio. A track record of good underwriting performance is demonstrated by a five-year average combined ratio of 93.6% (2014-2018).
UnipolSai has a leading position in Italy’s non-life segment, with a particularly strong position in motor. Performance is supported by the company’s access to data and sophisticated pricing capabilities, as well as its extensive use of telematics applied to the non-life segment. However, the concentration of its business portfolio in Italy exposes the company’s operations to any adverse changes in the economic and regulatory environment in the country.
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