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Fitch affirms Imperial Brands at 'BBB'

23 June 2017 07:44

Fitch Ratings has affirmed Imperial Brands' long-term issuer default rating and senior unsecured ratings of 'BBB', as well as its short-term IDR of 'F3'.

Fitch said the affirmation reflected its confidence regarding the continuation of Imperial's deleveraging, the resilient and strong cash-flow generation, and a renewed commitment to a prudent financial policy.

Fitch said these aspects offset the weak organic growth in the financial years to September 2016 and 2017 (FY16 and FY17), a modest drain on cash flow from a new phase of marketing and cost rationalisation investments and the adverse effect on net debt of the pound's depreciation.

Fitch said the weakening of sterling against the dollar and the euro during 2016 had delayed the reduction in leverage that it expected when in March 2016 it changed the outlook to stable from negative.

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Related Company: IMB

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