Mirabela Nickel Limited - Debt Rating Lowered by S&P

PERTH, AUSTRALIA, Oct. 23, 2013 /CNW/ - Mirabela Nickel Limited (Mirabela or 
the Company) (ASX: MBN) wishes to advise that Standard and Poor's Ratings 
Services (S&P) lowered the Company's corporate credit rating from 'CCC+' to SD 
(Selective Default). The Company provides the attached Press Release from S&P.  
Mirabela Nickel Ltd. Downgraded To 'SD' After Missed Interest Payment; Issue 
Rating Lowered To 'D' 
MELBOURNE (Standard & Poor's) Oct. 23, 2013—Standard & Poor's Ratings 
Services said today that it has lowered its corporate credit rating on 
Australian nickel mining company Mirabela Nickel Ltd. to 'SD' from 'CCC+'. We 
also lowered the issue credit rating on the US$395 million 8.75% notes to 'D' 
from 'CCC+'. At the same time, the ratings were removed from CreditWatch with 
negative implications, where they were placed on Oct. 2, 2013. 
The rating actions stem from Mirabela's announcement that it did not make the 
interest payment of about US$17.3 million on its 8.75% senior notes, which was 
scheduled to be paid on Oct. 15, 2013. This nonpayment would only constitute a 
default under the terms of the notes if it is not remedied within the 30-day 
grace period that will end by November 15. 
"At this stage, we are uncertain about Mirabela's willingness to make the 
payment within the grace period, although we believe that it currently has 
sufficient cash to meet that obligation," said Standard & Poor's credit 
analyst Thomas Jacquot. "The company had about US$80 million of cash at the 
end of August 2013." 
On September 27, Mirabela announced that one of its two offtakers, Votorantim 
Metais Niquel S.A. (Votorantim) had served notice to the company of its 
intention to terminate its offtake agreement at the end of November. The 
agreement was scheduled to expire at the end of 2014. As Mirabela has a US$50 
million loan from Banco Bradesco S.A. (Bradesco) that is secured on the 
Votorantim receivables, termination of the offtake agreement could lead to a 
default under the Bradesco loan which, if not remedied, could lead to a cross 
default under the US$395 million notes. 
Subsequently on October 18, Mirabela announced that the termination notice 
served by Votorantim was invalid and that Votorantim would honor its 
obligations as originally envisaged, although Mirabela expects Votorantim to 
purchase only a small proportion of the mine's output. This announcement would 
indicate that the likelihood of an immediate default under the Bradesco loan 
and potential subsequent cross default under the notes had reduced. However, 
the company subsequently announced, on October 22, that it has not paid the 
interest due on the notes. 
Mr. Jacquot added: "We consider a missed interest payment as a default when 
the nonpayment has occurred and is continuing for at least five business days 
from the scheduled payment date. This is even though a payment default has not 
occurred according to the legal provisions of Mirabela's notes, which 
incorporate a 30-day grace period." 
The company has indicated its intention to provide a further update to the 
markets by the end of October. Should the interest payment remain unpaid by 
Nov. 15, 2013, we would expect to lower the corporate credit rating on 
Mirabela to 'D'. Any potential upward movement on the rating above 'SD' is 
uncertain at this stage, both in terms of likelihood and magnitude. 
RELATED CRITERIA AND RESEARCH 


    --  Criteria For Assigning 'CCC+', 'CCC', 'CCC-', And 'CC' Ratings,
        Oct. 1, 2012
    --  General Criteria: Timeliness of Payments: Grace Periods,
        Guarantees, And Use Of 'D' And 'SD' Ratings, Dec. 23, 2010
    --  2008 Corporate Criteria: Analytical Methodology, April 15, 2008
    --  2008 Corporate Criteria: Rating Each Issue, April 15, 2008

Contacts

Media Contact: Richard Noonan; richard.noonan@standardandpoors.com; 613 9631 
2152

Credit analysts: Thomas Jacquot, thomas.jacquot@standardandpoors.com May 
Zhong, may.zhong@standardandpoors.com

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services, part of McGraw-Hill Financial (NYSE:MHFI), 
is the world's leading provider of independent credit risk research and 
benchmarks. We publish more than a million credit ratings on debt issued by 
sovereign, municipal, corporate and financial sector entities. With over 1,400 
credit analysts in 23 countries, and more than 150 years' experience of 
assessing credit risk, we offer a unique combination of global coverage and 
local insight. Our research and opinions about relative credit risk provide 
market participants with information and independent benchmarks that help to 
support the growth of transparent, liquid debt markets worldwide.

Standard & Poor's (Australia) Pty. Ltd. holds Australian financial services 
licence number 337565 under the Corporations Act 2001. Standard & Poor's 
credit ratings and related research are not intended for and must not be 
distributed to any person in Australia other than a wholesale client (as 
defined in Chapter 7 of the Corporations Act).



SOURCE  Mirabela Nickel Ltd. 
CONTACT DETAILS Mirabela Nickel Limited +61 8 9324 1177 info@mirabela.com.au 
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CO: Mirabela Nickel Ltd.
NI: MNG  
-0- Oct/23/2013 11:17 GMT