x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 20 July 2017

Moody’s gives Aldar big upgrade

Moody’s has marked Abu Dhabi's Aldar up three full notches, the second time this week a rating agency has raised its estimate of the company’s creditworthiness.

Moody’s Investors Services, the credit ratings agency, has given Abu Dhabi’s Aldar Properties a big upgrade in an assessment of its financial health.

Moody’s marked Aldar up three full notches, the second time this week a ratings agency has raised its estimate of the company’s creditworthiness. Standard & Poor’s marked up Aldar’s prospects by a more modest two notches.

Aldar’s multibillion-dollar merger with Sorouh was completed in the summer. The Moody’s analyst Martin Kohlhase said the deal was “transformational in nature as it added material recurring rental income from residential properties and created the leading Abu Dhabi real estate player with a large land bank and a sizeable investment property portfolio”.

He added that the “game changer” event was the development of Yas Mall, which is expected to deliver substantial cash flow through rental income from next year.

Aldar’s main credit rating has been increased from B1 to Ba1, and Moody’s has put the company on “positive outlook” status. “Aldar has a significantly improved risk profile as a result of increased visibility,” said Mr Kohlhase.

Greg Fewer, Aldar’s chief financial officer, said: “Our highly visible and reliable future cashflows will drive the continued deleveraging of the balance sheet over the next two years.”

fkane@thenational.ae