A.M. Best Co. has assigned a financial strength rating of A (Excellent) and issuer credit rating of “a” to ArgoGlobal SE (Malta). The outlook assigned to both ratings is stable.

The ratings of ArgoGlobal SE largely reflect the explicit support provided by Argo Re Ltd. (Argo Re) through significant internal quota share reinsurance. The ratings are also contingent upon the company meeting its forecasted objectives and maintaining supportive risk-adjusted capitalization.

ArgoGlobal SE is a newly created subsidiary of Argo Group International Holdings, Ltd. [NASDAQ: AGII] and will act as its primary insurance vehicle for accessing, underwriting and servicing European Union business not presented to the London or Lloyd’s markets. ArgoGlobal SE intends to write financial lines and professional indemnity insurance, with the initial focus being on the directors and officers (D&O) liability line of insurance.

Given the substantial reinsurance in place with Argo Re, any upward or downward movement in Argo Re’s ratings would impact ArgoGlobal SE’s ratings. In addition, any material negative deviation from ArgoGlobal SE’s business plan in terms of earnings and capitalization could also result in negative rating action.

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: “Assessing Country Risk”; “Rating Members of Insurance Groups”; “Rating New Company Formations”; “Risk Management and the Rating Process for Insurance Companies”; and “Understanding Universal BCAR.” 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.

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