Moody’s Investors Service on Tuesday downgraded the credit rating of telecom operator Bharti Airtel and the backed senior unsecured notes issued by the telco’s Africa arm on account of uncertainty around the company’s profitability, cash flow situations and debt levels. “Moody’s Investors Service (“Moody’s”) has downgraded to Ba1 from Baa3 the senior unsecured rating for Bharti Airtel Ltd. (Bharti) as well as the backed senior unsecured notes issued by Bharti’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Bharti Airtel Int’l (Netherlands) B.V.,” the agency said in statement.
Credit ratings reflect the company’s calibre to repay debt and raise funds. Ratings range between Aaa, which means best, to lowest category C. Ba1 rating means obligations are judged to have speculative elements and are subject to substantial credit risk, but have a superior ability to repay short-term debt obligations. “At the same time, Moody’s has assigned a Ba1 corporate family rating (CFR) to Bharti and withdrawn the company’s Baa3 issuer rating. The ratings outlook is negative,” Moody’s report said.