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29 February 2024News

James River suffers $152.8m loss for quarter

Troubled specialty re/insurer James River Holdings, which could be sold, reported a  net loss of $152.8 million as losses from discontinued operations took their toll.

Bermuda-based James River said the loss was driven by an $80.4 loss on “held for sale classification” of Bermuda-based JRG Re and a further $80 million loss from discontinued operations. 

The company said the loss from discontinued operations included $53.2 million associated with JRG Re fixed maturity securities “as the company longer has the intent or ability to hold securities in an unrealised loss position until a recovery of their fair value could occur”. 

The company said it had adjusted net operating income of $12.4 million, reflecting strong investment income and profitable underwriting results from continuing operations, especially in excess and surplus lines segment, which write the second highest quarterly amount of gross written premium in the company’s history. 

James River said in November it was exploring strategic alternatives including a possible sale or merger. 

The announcement came two days after James River announced it was selling its third-party casualty reinsurer JRG Reinsurance to Fleming Intermediate Holdings for $277 million.

The company had previously reported that it had overstated its earnings in the second quarter of 2023. 

Frank D'Orazio, the company’s chief executive officer, commented: “2023 was a year of significant transformation and strategic progress for James River, with the company now purely focused on our E&S and fronting platforms. 

“During the fourth quarter we eclipsed $1 billion in annual E&S premium, a significant milestone for the organisation that demonstrates the strength of our franchise, driven by meaningful submission growth. We expect to continue to build on this momentum in 2024 as our team remains focused on leveraging sustained attractive market conditions. 

“Our board of directors continues its exploration of strategic alternatives for the Company that was announced in November. We expect to provide an update on the process in due course.”

The company’s net loss of $152.8 million compared to a profit of $15.1 million in the same period in 2022. The net loss from discontinued operations rose from $8.1 million to $170.2 million.

The company said that for the full year the company had a combined ratio of 96.5% and E&S segment GWP exceeded $1 billion. 

It said its specialty admitted segment had a combined ratio of 92.2% for the fourth quarter and fronting and program gross written premium grew 12.5% compared to the prior year quarter, excluding its non-renewed California workers’ compensation program.  

For the year, the company reported a loss of $118 million compared to a profit of $22.2 million in 2022, while gross written premiums rose to $1.5 billion from $1.4 billion. Losses rose to $500 million from $440 million. 

For the year, losses from discontinued operations were $168.9 million compared to $3.9 million in 2022. 

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More on this story

News
13 November 2023   The re/insurer begins the process days after selling casualty reinsurer.
News
14 November 2023   The re/insurer, which is exploring strategic alternatives, disclosed the overstatement last week.
News
21 December 2023   James River's for sale Bermuda reinsurance subsidiary has also been downgraded.

More on this story

News
13 November 2023   The re/insurer begins the process days after selling casualty reinsurer.
News
14 November 2023   The re/insurer, which is exploring strategic alternatives, disclosed the overstatement last week.
News
21 December 2023   James River's for sale Bermuda reinsurance subsidiary has also been downgraded.