Tower Unit Stake Sale Credit Positive for Airtel: Moody’s
Kolkata: Moody’s Investors Service has said Bharti Airtel’s recent sale of a 3.7% stake for nearly ₹ 2,600 crore in its tower unit, Bharti Infratel, is “credit positive” for the parent company, but expects the market leader’s profitability to be under pressure over the next year or more due to the ongoing brutal price war.
The global rating agency Thursday said the stake sale in the tower arm would have no “immediate impact on Bharti’s Baa3 issuer and senior unsecured debt ratings and negative outlook”.
“The sale of this stake by Bharti Airtel is consistent with the management’s commitment to strengthening its balance sheet and reducing debt, which we view positively,” Annalisa Di Chiara, VP at Moody’s, said
in a statement. However, she expected the stake sale to have “limited impact on Bharti Airtel’s leverage”, even assuming all proceeds are used for debt reduction.