18 Jan 2019

Fitch Ratings Initiates Rating of Link REIT with “A” Rating and Stable Outlook

Link REIT (“Link”; Hong Kong stock code: 823), Asia’s largest real estate investment trust, today announced that Fitch Ratings has assigned it for the first time a Long-Term Issuer Default Rating and senior unsecured rating of ‘A’ with stable outlook. The rating agency has also assigned Link's US$5 billion medium-term note programme a rating of ‘A’.

According to Fitch’s rating report, Link REIT’s investment-property interest coverage is the highest among the “A” rating category, while its net debt/investment property value is the lowest among “A” rated peers.

“Link’s rating reflects its strong recurring income from its well-located investment-property portfolio. Its tenants mostly provide non-discretionary consumer staples, which are more resilient against economic cycles. Link REIT’s strong operational track record has also resulted in high occupancy rates in its properties and consistent growth in EBITDA margins,” Fitch’s rating report said.

George Hongchoy, Chief Executive Officer of Link Asset Management Limited, the manager of Link REIT, said, “A third ‘A’ rating from the big three credit rating agencies, on par with our global industry peers, further affirms our commitment to a prudent capital management strategy. As we build on our resilient, increasingly diversified asset portfolio, we will continue to enhance capital management to promote the long-term growth of our business."

According to Fitch’s rating report, key rating drivers for Link include its resilient investment-property portfolio serving non-discretionary trades, its solid operating record in asset enhancement and trade remixing, and its history of prudent financial management as demonstrated by financial leverage that compares favourably with those of its local industry peers.

Link also holds strong corporate ratings from the two other major credit rating agencies, namely A/Stable (S&P) and A2/Stable (Moody's).

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