A.M. Best Co. has affirmed the financial strength rating of A- (Excellent) and issuer credit rating (ICR) of “a-” of Crusader Insurance Company (Crusader). Concurrently, A.M. Best has affirmed the ICR of “bbb-” of Crusader’s parent holding company, Unico American Corporation (Unico) [NASDAQ:UNAM]. The outlook for all ratings is stable. Both companies are domiciled in Woodland Hills, CA.

The rating actions reflect Crusader’s excellent risk-adjusted capitalization, profitable underwriting and operating performance, strong regional market presence, as well as the financial flexibility afforded it through Unico.

The positive rating factors are somewhat offset by Crusader’s geographic concentration of risk, which exposes the company’s results to legislative and regulatory changes, as well as competitive market pressures. Despite these concerns, the outlook reflects Crusader’s favorable operating profitability and strong capitalization.

While the ratings for Crusader are stable, future positive rating actions may result from the company’s continued strong underwriting and operating performance. However, negative rating actions could result if operating performance falls markedly short of A.M. Best’s expectations.

The principal methodology used in determining these ratings is Best’s Credit Rating Methodology -- Global Life and Non-Life Insurance Edition , which provides a comprehensive explanation of A.M. Best’s rating process and highlights the different rating criteria employed. Additional key criteria utilized include: “Risk Management and the Rating Process for Insurance Companies”; “Understanding BCAR for Property/Casualty Insurers”; “The Treatment of Terrorism Risk in the Rating Evaluation”; and “Natural Catastrophe Stress Test Methodology.” Methodologies 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 © 2011 by A.M. Best Company, Inc. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Copyright Business Wire 2010