News story published on 25 May 2016
We are very pleased to report that credit agency, Standard and Poor’s (S&P) have favourably revised their outlook of the financial position of our business to stable, and have affirmed their rating at AA-.
The report from the world wide credit rating agency determined that we had reacted well to both the cuts in rental income and new operating environment. We have scaled back our development programme slightly and this resulted in our new business plan being viewed by S&P as more prudent.
The report states: “In our view, U.K. social housing provider Cross Keys Homes Ltd. benefits from a very strong enterprise profile, a strong financial profile… we now view positively Cross Keys’ recent strategy review in favour of a less aggressive capital program and we also anticipate stronger financial performance by fiscal year-end 2019. We are therefore revising our outlook on Cross Keys Homes to stable from negative and affirming our 'AA-' rating.”
Alongside this decision by Standard and Poor’s, we have been able to secure the successful sale of a £45 million bond issue through our treasury financing company, Cambridgeshire Housing Capital plc.
The bond offer was 250% over-subscribed by investors, which demonstrates investor confidence in our long-term future. The spread above Gilt was 1.39% with a yield of 3.705%. The Lead Arranger and Bookrunner on the bond was Lloyds Bank.
Claire Higgins, our Chief Executive, said: “It really is positive news that S&P have improved their view of our financial position. It is testament to the hard work of my team in driving efficiencies across the company. It was a difficult decision to cut back slightly on our development programme at a time when there is a huge housing crisis facing the country. The securing of our bond is proof that we have made the right decisions and we are now in a very strong position to continue to deliver on our ambitions. We are still building more homes than ever before, and I am confident we can keep doing this and more whilst still delivering the excellent services our tenants and stakeholders expect.”