A.M. Best Co. has affirmed the debt rating of “bbb” on 7% senior unsecured notes of Endurance Specialty Holdings, Ltd. (Endurance) [NYSE: ENH] (Hamilton, Bermuda) due July 15, 2034, which has been increased by $85 million under the currently effective shelf registration statement. The rating outlook is stable.

The current $85 million senior unsecured debt issue represents a re-opening of the debt facility, which was originally opened in July 2004; thus, bringing the total issue amount to $335 million. The current issue has the identical terms as the original issuance with the exception of issue date and first interest payment. Upon settlement, the new issue will trade interchangeably and vote with the previously issued senior notes.

As a result of this increased debt issuance, Endurance’s unadjusted financial leverage is projected to be maintained in the mid-teens, which remains supportive of its current rating level. Endurance’s historical earnings performance has resulted in solid fixed charge coverage measures. Endurance intends to utilize the proceeds of the issuance for general corporate purposes.

The debt rating reflects Endurance’s solid level of risk-adjusted capitalization, favorable historical operating performance and its reasonably diversified business profile. Further supporting the rating is Endurance’s robust enterprise risk management framework.

For Best’s Credit Ratings, an overview of the rating process and rating methodologies, please visit www.ambest.com/ratings.

The principal methodologies used in determining these ratings, including any additional methodologies and factors that may have been considered, can be found at www.ambest.com/ratings/methodology.

Founded in 1899, A.M. Best Company is a global full-service credit rating organization dedicated to serving the financial and health care service industries, including insurance companies, banks, hospitals and health care system providers. For more information, visit www.ambest.com.

Copyright Business Wire 2010