- ZEP-RE’s new rating was a function of the reinsurer’s exposure to comparatively riskier markets, counterbalanced by support through preferential treatment
- CEO Hope Murera said the rating upgrade reflects the firm’s commitment to drive greater insurance penetration across Africa
GCR Ratings (GCR) has upgraded the national scale claims paying ability rating assigned to ZEP-RE (PTA Reinsurance Company) to AAA(KE) up from AA+(KE), with the outlook accorded as Stable.
In a statement, GCR Ratings said ZEP-RE’s new rating was a function of the reinsurer’s exposure to comparatively riskier markets, counterbalanced by support through preferential treatment and healthy membership strength and diversity.
“The reinsurer’s mandate is fairly strong, given its position as an established reinsurer within the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) region,'' GCR Ratings said.
It attributed the upgrade to the firm's sound financial profile supported by solid capitalization and strong liquidity, somewhat offsetting inherent earnings pressures.
''We expect that the reinsurer will continue to gradually build its status in target markets over the medium term, while the business profile is not expected to change materially over the outlook horizon,'' the rating agency said.
Speaking on the new ratings ZEP-RE chief executive officer Hope Murera said the rating upgrade reflects the firm’s commitment to drive greater insurance penetration across Africa, as mandated by its foundation by Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA).
"We are extremely proud to have received this rating upgrade and of the signal it sends to our stakeholders across the continent. It is fitting to receive this rating upgrade just a few days after celebrating our 25th year of operation in COMESA,'' Murera said.
The CEO added that the AAA rating is the highest rating that can be achieved on the nationale rating scale and hence demonstrates the hard work the firm has put in to secure the milestone
ZEP-RE is one of the largest supranational reinsurer focused on the COMESA region, with gross premiums sourced from more than six significant markets, with Kenya accounting for a majority 40 per cent of gross premiums.