Fitch Affirms MBTh's Guaranteed MTN Programme at 'AAA(tha)'

Sun Sep 8, 2013 11:07pm EDT

(The following statement was released by the rating agency) BANGKOK/SEOUL/SINGAPORE, September 08 (Fitch) Fitch Ratings (Thailand) Limited has affirmed Mercedes-Benz (Thailand) Limited's (MBTh) THB10bn medium-term debenture programme guaranteed by its parent, Daimler AG (Daimler; A-/Stable), at National Long-Term 'AAA(tha)' The Outlook is Stable. Key Rating Drivers Guaranteed by Daimler: The rating of the MTN programme is based solely on the full, irrevocable and unconditional guarantee provided by Daimler. Daimler's Long-Term Foreign Currency Issuer Default Rating of 'A-' is at the same level as Thailand's Long-Term Local Currency IDR, which correlates with 'AAA(tha)' on Fitch's Thai National Rating scale. Strong relationship with Daimler: MBTh is 99.99% owned by Daimler, with which it has strong operational and financial links. MBTh imports both completely built-up (CBU) vehicles and completely knocked-down (CKD) kits from Daimler for local assembly and distribution. MBTh also is closely monitored by Daimler's regional treasury centre and strictly implements the group's treasury policy. A luxury-car leader: MBTh is one of Thailand's premium-car market leaders, due to its low after-sales service costs and the high value its vehicles command in the second-hand market. The company also provides hire-purchase and leasing services through its wholly-owned leasing subsidiary, Mercedes-Benz Leasing (Thailand) Company Limited. Rating Sensitivities Negative: Future developments that may, individually or collectively, lead to negative rating action include - Any rating action that results in Daimler's Long-Term Foreign-Currency IDR falling below Thailand's Long-Term Local-Currency IDR will affect the National Ratings of MBTh's MTN programme. Positive: The rating of MBTh's MTN programme is capped at 'AAA(tha)', the highest possible rating on the National Rating scale. Contacts: Primary Analyst Ekapan Prompraphant Associate Director +66 2 108 0162 Fitch Ratings (Thailand) Limited Level 17, Park Ventures, 57 Wireless Road, Lumpini, Patumwan, Bangkok 10330, Thailand Secondary Analyst Lertchai Kochareonrattanakul Senior Director +66 2 108 0158 Committee Chairperson Jeong Min Pak Senior Director +822 3278 8360 Media Relations: Leslie Tan, Singapore, Tel: +65 67 96 7234, Email: leslie.tan@fitchratings.com. Note to Editors: Fitch's National ratings provide a relative measure of creditworthiness for rated entities in countries with relatively low international sovereign ratings and where there is demand for such ratings. The best risk within a country is rated 'AAA' and other credits are rated only relative to this risk. National ratings are designed for use mainly by local investors in local markets and are signified by the addition of an identifier for the country concerned, such as 'AAA(tha)' for National ratings in Thailand. Specific letter grades are not therefore internationally comparable. Additional information is available at www.fitchratings.com. Applicable criteria, 'Corporate Rating Methodology', dated 5 August 2013 are available at www.fitchratings.com. Applicable Criteria and Related Research: Corporate Rating Methodology: Including Short-Term Ratings and Parent and Subsidiary Linkage here Additional Disclosure Solicitation Status here ALL FITCH CREDIT RATINGS ARE SUBJECT TO CERTAIN LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS. PLEASE READ THESE LIMITATIONS AND DISCLAIMERS BY FOLLOWING THIS LINK: here. IN ADDITION, RATING DEFINITIONS AND THE TERMS OF USE OF SUCH RATINGS ARE AVAILABLE ON THE AGENCY'S PUBLIC WEBSITE 'WWW.FITCHRATINGS.COM'. PUBLISHED RATINGS, CRITERIA AND METHODOLOGIES ARE AVAILABLE FROM THIS SITE AT ALL TIMES. FITCH'S CODE OF CONDUCT, CONFIDENTIALITY, CONFLICTS OF INTEREST, AFFILIATE FIREWALL, COMPLIANCE AND OTHER RELEVANT POLICIES AND PROCEDURES ARE ALSO AVAILABLE FROM THE 'CODE OF CONDUCT' SECTION OF THIS SITE. FITCH MAY HAVE PROVIDED ANOTHER PERMISSIBLE SERVICE TO THE RATED ENTITY OR ITS RELATED THIRD PARTIES. DETAILS OF THIS SERVICE FOR RATINGS FOR WHICH THE LEAD ANALYST IS BASED IN AN EU-REGISTERED ENTITY CAN BE FOUND ON THE ENTITY SUMMARY PAGE FOR THIS ISSUER ON THE FITCH WEBSITE.

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