Ecclesiastical rated “Excellent” by credit experts

16 June 2021

Global credit rating agency AM Best* has affirmed the credit rating of Ecclesiastical Insurance Office PLC (EIO) as “Excellent”.

The agency announced the specialist insurer’s Financial Strength Rating as ‘A’ (Excellent) and with a Long-Term Issuer Credit Rating of ‘A’ (Excellent).

At the same time, AM Best also affirmed the Long-Term Issue Credit Rating of “bbb” (Good). The outlook of these Credit Ratings (ratings) is stable.

The ratings reflect EIO’s balance sheet strength, which AM Best assessed as very strong, as well as having adequate operating performance, a neutral business profile and appropriate enterprise risk management. The assessment also factors in the company’s good liquidity profile.

Despite a challenging 2020, EIO’s financial performance improved in the first quarter of 2021. AM Best stated that it “expects EIO to generate robust returns on equity, although these should remain subject to potential volatility due to the company’s investment allocation.”

Ecclesiastical provides insurance products and risk management services in the faith, heritage, charity, education and real estate markets and has maintained a strong position as specialist insurers for over 130 years.

Over the past five years, the company has experienced year-on-year growth, with gross written premium reaching £437 million in 2020 and a new office opening earlier this year. AM Best’s rating expects that EIO’s premium will continue to increase gradually, driven by rate increases and new business opportunities.

Denise Cockrem, group chief financial officer at Ecclesiastical, said: “Despite the challenging environment through 2020, we remain in a strong capital position and AM Best have reaffirmed our credit ratings.

“We recognise that there are still challenges in the economic environment but we are energised by the clarity of our charitable purpose to donate £100million to charity by the end of 2021 and excited about the opportunities ahead."

* Founded in 1899, AM Best is the world’s first credit rating agency, specialising in the insurance industry and operating from regional offices in London, Amsterdam, Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore and Mexico City.