Fitch Assigns UBA’s $7.75% Senior Unsecured Notes Final ‘B’ Rating

l-r: Group Managing Director/CEO, UBA Plc, Mr. Kennedy Uzoka; Group Chairman, Mr. Tony O. Elumelu; Deputy Managing Director, Mr. Victor Osadolor; Company Secretary, Mr. Bili Odum; and Director, Mrs Foluke Abdulrazaq , at the 55th Annual General Meeting of UBA Plc, held in Lagos on Friday

Lagos Nigeria June 08 (Naija247news) Fitch Ratings has assigned United Bank for Africa Plc’s (UBA) USD500 million 7.75% senior unsecured notes maturing on 8 June 2022 a final ‘B’ rating.

The final rating is in line with the expected rating Fitch assigned to the notes on 23 May 2017 (see “Fitch Assigns ‘B(EXP)’ Rating to UBA’s Senior Notes’).

Based on Fitch’s assessment on expected recoveries in a liquidation scenario, a final Recovery Rating (RR) of ‘RR4(EXP)’ is also assigned to the notes, implying average recovery prospects. The final RR is also in line with the expected RR Fitch assigned to the notes on 23 May 2017

The final rating is in line with UBA’s Long-Term Foreign Currency
Issuer Default Rating (IDR) of ‘B’. In Fitch’s view, the likelihood of default on these notes reflects the likelihood of default of the bank.

According to Fitch’s criteria, a bank’s IDR usually expresses Fitch’s opinion on the risk of default on senior obligations to third-party, non-government creditors as in Fitch’s view these are typically the obligations whose non-performance would best reflect the uncured failure of the entity.

Where a bank has a Long-Term IDR of ‘B+’ or below, Fitch usually assigns a RR to the entity’s issues. RRs provide greater transparency on the recoveries component of Fitch’s assessment of the credit risk of a low-rated issuer’s securities.

A change in UBA’s IDR would affect the rating of the notes and may also affect recovery prospects and the RR. UBA’s IDRs are driven by the bank’s standalone financial profile, as reflected in the bank’s ‘b’ Viability Rating (VR).

UBA’s VR and IDRs are primarily sensitive to further asset quality deterioration and capital deterioration as well as continued pressure on foreign currency funding and liquidity.

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Godwin Okafor is a Financial Journalist, Internet Social Entrepreneur and Founder of Naija247news Media Limited. He has over 16 years experience in financial journalism. His experience cuts across traditional and digital media. He started his journalism career at Business Day, Nigeria and founded Naija247news Media in 2010. Godwin holds a Bachelors degree in Industrial Relations and Personnel Management from the Lagos State University, Ojo, Lagos. He is an alumni of Lagos Business School and a Fellow of the University of Pennsylvania (Wharton Seminar for Business Journalists). Over the years, he has won a number of journalism awards. Godwin is the chairman of Emmerich Resources Limited, the publisher of Naija247news.

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