FITCH Upgrades United Bulgarian Bank Long Term Rating to 'BB'


UBB maintains a leading position in the retail lending, according to the rating agency

Fitch Ratings, the international rating agency, upgraded the Long-term rating of United Bulgarian Bank (UBB) to 'BB' from 'B+' and affirmed its 'B' Short-term rating. The agency upgraded the bank's Long-term Outlook from Stable to Positive.

The positive upgrade now equals the UBB rating with the sovereign rating of Bulgaria, which according Fitch is also 'BB' with Positive Outlook.The positive upgrade of the Bank's rating is due to a great extend to the support from its parent company, National Bank of Greece, which holds an 89.9% stake in UBB.

According to the FITCH analysts UBB is managing successfully not only its corporate banking business, but is the first domestic bank, which is methodically increasing its presence on the retail banking market, and especially in its retail lending section.

The FITCH report also points out that the improving economic stability in Bulgaria gives the Bank a possibility to develop more aggressively new retail banking products and services, which resulted in rapid loan growth.

The latest FITCH upgrade follows the recent Standard & Poor's confirmatiom of UBB's long term "BB-" with Stable Outlook and short term "B" ratings.