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Harrington Re raises $600m

Axis CEO Albert Benchimol

A Bermudian start-up reinsurance firm has raised $600 million in capital.

Harrington Re Reinsurance Holdings with its subsidiary Harrington Re has completed a capital raise of around $550 million of equity and $50 million of debt, including a $100 million equity investment by a subsidiary of Axis Capital Holdings.

And around $50 million in equity investment came from affiliates of the Blackstone Group.

An Axis subsidiary is to be exclusive liability manager for Harrington, while Blackstone will act as investment manager, handling a multi-asset portfolio of Blackstone alternative investment strategies.

Bill Fischer, chief executive officer of Harrington Re and a director, said: “With the market-leading speciality underwriting of Axis and the proven alternative expertise of Blackstone, Harrington Re is well positioned to combine attractive global underwriting opportunities with a diversified portfolio of alternative investments to create value for all stakeholders.”

Albert Benchimol, CEO of Axis, said: “Our relationship with Harrington Re is a key element in our 21st-century approach to capital management, whereby we complement our existing balance sheet with a broad range of third-party capital to deliver enhanced capacity, innovation and tailored solutions to our clients and brokers.

“Harrington Re’s foundation is made even stronger by having Blackstone as the investment manager of its portfolio.”

Jay Nichols, CEO of Axis Reinsurance, added: “Harrington Re is an integral part of our larger alternative capital strategy, which is designed to match the right risk with the right capital.

“The company will expand the already broad product offering and capacity of Axis across medium to long-tail lines of business to better serve our clients and distribution partners.

“We look forward to creating value and innovating at the intersection or risk financing and risk transfer.”

Harrington Re said its plan is to combine a multi-line reinsurance portfolio with a diversified allocation to alternative investment strategies to earn attractive risk-adjusted returns.

And it added the aim was to develop a portfolio to maximise the risk-reward characteristics of assets and liabilities, using the strengths of Axis and Blackstone while promoting a disciplined and integrated approach to underwriting and investing.