Brew Bonds

Mar 25, 2013 (LBO) – Sri Lanka’s Lion Brewery will sell 3.0 billion rupees in unsecured debt with the firm expected to spend 5.0 billion rupees to upgrade plant over the coming year, Fitch Ratings said. In the current financial year it had spent 2.8 billion rupees.

Fitch had given a ‘AA-(lka)’ expected rating to the debenture, ahead of final documentation. Lion Brewery itself has been given a ‘AA-(lka)’ rating with a stable outlook.

Lion had a strong market position with the largest share of the domestic beer market giving strong cashflows.

Producers in the industry faced high regulatory risk in the form of high excise duties which put legal products out of reach of the population, Fitch said. But entry barriers and advertising restrictions helped older producers like Lion.

The full statement is reproduced below

Fitch Publishes Sri Lanka’s Lion Brewery’s ‘AA-(lka)’ Rating; Rates Proposed Debt ‘AA-(lka)(EXP)’

Fitch Ratings-Colombo/Singapore-25 March 2013: Fitch Ratings has published Sri Lanka-based Lion Brewery (Ceylon) PLC’s (Lion) ‘AA-(lka)’ National Long-Term Rating with Stable Outlook. Fitch has also assigned a ‘AA-(lka)’ senior unsecured rating to Lion.