Fitch, S&P upgrade Metinvest ratings
Fitch Ratings has upgraded Ukrainian integrated steel company Metinvest B.V.'s (Metinvest) Long-Term Local- and Foreign-Currency Issuer Default Ratings (IDRs) and senior unsecured bonds to 'BB-' from 'B+'. The Outlook is Stable.
"The upgrade follows Ukraine's Country Ceiling upgrade to 'B' from 'B-'on 6 September 2019. The IDR of Metinvest remains two notches above the Country Ceiling," Fitch said in a report.
Fitch said that this happened due to its comfortable hard-currency (HC) external debt service coverage, and also its 'BB' category business and financial profiles.
In addition, S&P Global Ratings raised Metinvest's issuer credit rating and its issue ratings on the existing notes to 'B' from 'B-'. The Outlook is Stable.
S&P said that the Ukrainian steel maker Metinvest has built a track record of balanced financial policy in the past 18 months, with relatively low gearing and positive free cash flow, supporting an adequate spending between growth and shareholder returns.
The two agencies also assigned preliminary ratings to senior unsecured notes of at least $500 million proposed by Metinvest to issue at once after purchase for cash up to $440 million notes in circulation: Fitch – 'BB-(EXP),' and S&P – 'B.'
"The proposed senior unsecured notes of at least $500 million will smooth the maturity profile and strengthen liquidity," S&P said.