23 Dec 2009 17:38

Fitch assigns AK Bars $280-mln bond final 'BB' rating

MOSCOW. Dec 23 (Interfax) - Fitch Ratings has assigned AK BARS Luxembourg S.A.'s USD280m issue of senior unsecured loan participation notes with coupon of 10.25% due in December 2012, a final 'BB' rating, the agency said in a press release.

Since Fitch's 1 Dec 2009 announcement of the expected ratings, the amount of new notes issued for cash was further upsized by USD55m from the previous amount of USD150,859,000 to bring the total new issue size to USD280m.

The notes are to be used solely for financing a loan to Russia's AK BARS Bank (Ak Bars, 'BB'/Stable Outlook). This is the third issue under the USD1.5bn loan participation notes programme.

Ak Bars is the largest bank in the Republic of Tatarstan (rated 'BBB-'/Stable Outlook) by assets and was the 16th-largest bank in Russia at end-Q309. The republic controls 96% of the bank's shares according to end-H109 financial statements reviewed by auditors.

The bank was Russia's 16th largest by assets, according to the Interfax-100 ranking at the end of the third quarter of 2009.