NEW YORK: Moody s Investors Service has announced an agreement with Finance and Banking Consultants International (Finbi) to form a joint venture to provide credit rating and research services in Egypt.
The venture will provide services in Egypt and other Middle Eastern countries. Pursuant to the agreement, the parties intend to jointly form a credit rating agency to be named Middle East Rating & Investor Services (Meris) that will be headquartered in Cairo.
Meris will focus on issuing domestic market ratings, opinions of the relative creditworthiness of issuers or issues within a given country. The provisions of this agreement will call for Moody s to provide technical assistance to the joint venture.
Moody s joint venture with Finbi establishes a platform for more extensive credit rating, research and analysis in the region, said John Rutherfurd, Jr., president and chief executive officer of Moody s Corporation, the parent company of Moody s Investors Service.
In making the joint announcement, Amr Hassanein, chairman of Finbi said: We are pleased to enter into this joint venture with Moody s Investors Service, which is one of the world s leading rating agencies. Meris will be in a pre-eminent position to offer local market participants independent credit ratings and analysis that will assist in the allocation of credit in Egypt and the Middle East.
Finance and Banking Consultants International was established in 1992 with activities covering public policy and strategic planning, economic and financial services and local and international development services. Finbi was also one of the first to introduce credit ratings to the Egyptian market, establishing its own credit rating activity in 1999.
Since its inception, Finbi s rating activity has assigned ratings to some of Egypt s largest and best-known companies. Moody s Investors Service, a leading global credit rating, research and risk analysis firm, publishes credit opinions, research, and ratings on fixed-income securities, issuers of securities and other credit obligations.
The firm provides credit ratings and analysis on more than $30 trillion of debt covering approximately 136,000 corporate and government securities, 67,000 public finance obligations, 6,000 corporate and financial institution relationships and 100 sovereign nations.
Moody s is a subsidiary of Moody s Corporation (NYSE: MCO), which employs approximately 2,100 employees in 18 countries and had reported revenue of $1.0 billion in 2002.