Baltika wins Aa3 credit rating

Baltika Brewing has received Aa3 (rus) long-term and RUS-1 short-term credit ratings from the Interfax Rating Agency, the Russian affiliate of Moody's Investors Service. The ratings reflect the company's leading position in the Russian market, the wide recognition of its name and brands and its strong financial situation, Baltika's press office asserted yesterday. The ratings also reflect the strength of Baltika's management in achieving and holding its leading position in the market, the office said. The rating agency analysts stressed that Baltika was likely to grow faster than the market and further consolidate its market leadership.

The long-term Aa3 (rus) rating is a statement of very high credit-worthiness in relation to other borrowers, while the short-term RUS-1 rating signifies the very highest credit-worthiness in relation to other Russian borrowers.

Baltika Brewing was founded in 1990 and registered in July 1992. The book value of the company is approximately $4.02 million divided among 107,087,200 common shares and 13,485,600 Type A preferred stock with par value of one ruble. The chief shareholder is Baltic Beverage Holding AB (74%). For the first quarter of 2003, Baltika produced 3.2 million hectoliters of beer, with export sales (183,000 hectoliters) up 9.5% over the comparable quarter of 2002.

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