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ROSNO's rating upgraded by Moody's


LONDON—Moody's Investors Service has upgraded the financial strength rating of the Russian insurer OAO ROSNO from Ba1 to Baa1, reflecting the company's new majority ownership by Germany's Allianz SE, the rating agency announced Friday.

Moody's also upgraded ROSNO's national scale rating from to Moody's assigned a stable outlook to both ratings.

In February, AFK Sistema and Allianz S.E. announced that Allianz would be the majority shareholder in Moscow-based ROSNO with a 97% stake.

"This transaction highlights the importance of the Russian market for Allianz," said Timour Boudkeev, Moody's lead analyst for ROSNO, in a news release.

"Moody's expects that Allianz will remain committed to the Russian market, at least in the medium-term and possibly beyond, and will provide ROSNO with capital to support its growth, as well as in a financial distress scenario," Mr. Boudkeev said.

ROSNO is one of the leading Russian insurers and has a high degree of business diversification, focusing mostly on property, motor and voluntary medical insurance, Moody's noted. In 2005, the company reported gross premiums written of $549.6 million and net income of $20.2 million, Moody's said.