A month after placing Golden Pages on credit watch, Maalot S&P has downgraded the directories company's debt by no less than six notches. Golden Pages responded that it is meeting all its liabilities.
Maalot said Tuesday that it had downgraded Golden Pages' Series B1 bonds from A-minus to BB-minus. The credit rating agency had put Golden Pages on credit watch the previous month, citing expectations of deteriorating performance that exacerbate the company's financial risk.
For 2008 Golden Pages reported losing NIS 119 million. As TheMarker reported at the time, it was in violation of certain financial covenants regarding shareholder equity.
Golden Pages is controlled by the Australian company Babcock & Brown Capital, which acquired it a year and a half ago at a company valuation of NIS 400 million. Golden Pages' was recently appraised at just NIS 30 million.
A spokesperson for Golden Pages commented that it disclosed the possibility of violation of covenants with bondholders several weeks ago, adding that its owners had announced intentions of selling it.
Therefore, Golden Pages said, the downgrade was anticipated.
"However, the company is acting to find a solution quickly," the Golden Pages spokesperson went on to say.
"In 2008 the company generated Ebitda of about NIS 80,000, [further to] significant improvement in its revenue mix [by increasing its Internet income]. It is now in compliance with all its liabilities to suppliers, workers, banks and bondholders."
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