Best Affirms Rating for Rembrandt Insurance Co.

June 4, 2004

A.M. Best Co. has affirmed the A (Excellent) financial strength rating of Rembrandt Insurance Company Ltd. Rembrandt is a Bermuda-domiciled captive operation of Vitol Holding B.V. (Rotterdam), a global oil trading company. The rating outlook remains stable.

The rating reflects Rembrandt’s superior risk-adjusted capital position and consistent operating profitability. The company has reported operating profits in each of the last 11 years, and A.M. Best believes this trend is likely to continue, supported by a combined ratio of approximately 55 percent at year-end 2004.

Due to the exceptionally small number of claims in recent years and the fact that the company transfers the majority of earned premiums to IBNR reserves each year, net IBNR reserves were USD 13.2 million or 68 percent of net outstanding claims at Dec. 31, 2003. A.M. Best believes this prudent approach to reserving is likely to continue in 2004 and 2005.

An offsetting factor is the lack of business diversification. The company’s prime objective is to write group insurance for Vitol Holding B.V. and, as such, it has a limited spread of business classes and the number of contracts written is small. Marine cargo and charterers liability accounted for 90 percent of gross premium written in 2003.

A.M Best believes there is unlikely to be any significant change in the company’s risk profile in the medium term.

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