December 21, 2012 at 16:49 PM EST
A.M. Best Revises Outlook to Positive for Issuer Credit Rating of Seven Seas Insurance Company, Inc.

A.M. Best Co. has revised the outlook of the issuer credit rating (ICR) to positive from stable and affirmed the financial strength rating (FSR) of A (Excellent) and ICR of “a” of Seven Seas Insurance Company, Inc. (Seven Seas) (Riviera Beach, FL). The outlook for the FSR is stable.

The rating actions reflect Seven Seas’ outstanding underwriting and operating performance, excellent capitalization and the synergies gained from its effective low-cost distribution platform and preferential access to those it insures via the customer network of its affiliate, Tropical Shipping and Construction Company Limited. Tropical Shipping is one of the largest transporters of containerized cargo from the United States and Canada to the Caribbean region and the Bahamas.

The ratings also acknowledge management’s specialty underwriting expertise within the ocean and inland marine cargo market, as well as its strong client relationships, effective loss control and risk management techniques.

Seven Seas and Tropical Shipping are ultimately owned by AGL Resources, Inc. (AGL) [NYSE: GAS], a result of AGL’s merger with Nicor Inc., effective December 9, 2011. AGL, an Atlanta-based energy services holding company, is one of the nation’s largest natural gas distribution companies.

Positive rating actions could occur if the company can sustain the outstanding underwriting and operating results and excellent risk-adjusted capitalization. Negative rating actions could occur if capitalization and/or operating performance fall markedly short of A.M. Best's expectations, including a significant deterioration in loss trends, and unforeseen changes in its existing operations and/or business strategy.

The methodology used in determining these ratings is Best’s Credit Rating Methodology, which provides a comprehensive explanation of A.M. Best’s rating process and contains the different rating criteria employed in the rating process. Best’s Credit Rating Methodology can be found at www.ambest.com/ratings/methodology.

Founded in 1899, A.M. Best Company is the world’s oldest and most authoritative insurance rating and information source. For more information, visit www.ambest.com.

Copyright © 2012 by A.M. Best Company, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Contacts:

A.M. Best Co.
Richelle Bryan, (908) 439-2200, ext. 5344
Financial Analyst
richelle.bryan@ambest.com
or
Joseph Roethel, (908) 439-2200, ext. 5630
Assistant Vice President
joseph.roethel@ambest.com
or
Rachelle Morrow, (908) 439-2200, ext. 5378
Senior Manager, Public Relations
rachelle.morrow@ambest.com
or
Jim Peavy, (908) 439-2200, ext. 5644
Assistant Vice President, Public Relations
james.peavy@ambest.com
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