Best Downgrades and Withdraws Ratings of Inter-Ocean and Subsidiaries

April 7, 2005

A.M. Best Co. announced that it has downgraded the financial strength rating to “B++” (Very Good) from “A-” (Excellent) and the issuer credit rating to “bbb” from “a-” for the reinsurance subsidiaries of Bermuda-based Inter-Ocean Holdings Limited. Best also downgraded Inter-Ocean’s issuer credit rating to “bb” from “bbb-“.

Best said the rating actions were in preparation for a withdrawal of the ratings on Inter-Ocean and its reinsurance subsidiaries in response to management’s request that the operating subsidiaries be removed from A.M. Best’s interactive rating process. Once withdrawn they will be assigned a rating of “NR-4” (Company Request).

“The rating downgrade follows Inter-Ocean’s announcement that it has voluntarily entered into runoff and has ceased writing new business,” said Best. “As a runoff entity, Inter-Ocean’s liabilities will continue to be supported by its 11 shareholders who originally sourced all of the company’s business and continue to maintain a strong level of expertise in the global insurance and reinsurance market. One of these shareholders ultimately assumes all the underwriting or timing risk for each transaction undertaken by Inter-Ocean.”

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