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Centauri insurance companies (Centauri Specialty Insurance Co. and Centauri National Insurance Co.) have sustained their financial stability rating of “A” (Exceptional) from Demotech, after being strengthened financially through its recent acquisition by Applied Underwriters, the company said in a statement.

The Sarasota-based insurer, with over $200 million in annual premiums from policyholders largely concentrated in Florida and Hawaii, plans to rapidly expanding in the Carolinas and other Southern US markets through a growing network of independent agents and brokers after extensive examinations measuring claims paying ability, financial reserves and overall financial stability.

The acquisition by Applied Underwriters closed in February.

According to Steve Menzies, Chairman of Applied Underwriters, national insurer rating service Demotech’s affirmation of its “A” rating supports the strategic plan undertaken by Applied to expand its presence in the Southern market through this acquisition, through Centauri’s recent acquisition of the renewal rights from Gulfstream, and by its recently announced Florida Casualty Insurance Co. transaction.

“Centauri is on solid footing and is newly enabled to capitalize upon the strength of Applied to expand into new target markets both geographically and in product sectors such as residential property and casualty programs, private flood insurance and new products now on the drawing board,” Menzies said.

Rick Espino, President of Centauri, noted the overall market impact of Applied’s investment and the importance of the rating, saying Applied’s technical resources, from its leadership level to the corporate capacities of its Omaha operational teams will help the company serve its clients with expanded offerings.

“We believe that Applied’s timely, revitalizing investment in Centauri will make a major difference in the future of insuring weather-catastrophe exposed homeowners,” Espino said.

Demotech announced other ratings decisions earlier this month, and noted several Florida-based insurers are being closely watched after negative 2020 year-end results. The Florida market as a whole lost more than $1.5 billion last year.

Centauri Specialty Insurance Co. and Centauri National Insurance Co. were formed in 2006 and are based in Sarasota, Fla. Centauri Insurance is a property and casualty insurance company licensed to serve policyholders in 10 states including Alabama, Florida, Hawaii, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Texas. Centauri provides catastrophe coverage to its policyholders.

Applied Underwriters is a global risk services firm offering business services, insurance and reinsurance solutions.