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April 1, 2010

Kuwait’s KIPCO downgraded again

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by Rapid TV News

Website: Rapid TV News

Kuwait’s KIPCO owns and finances the Orbit-Showtime pay-TV operation in the Middle East.

It has just suffered its second downgrade from the Standard & Poor’s ratings agency in a week.

KIPCO is connected to Kuwait’s ruling Al Sabah family.

KIPCO saw its long-term and short-term credit ratings was marked down yesterday, and last week suffered a similar downgrade to its investment portfolio – which includes its majority ownership of Orbit-Showtime.

(Kipco’s only other major investment is the United Gulf Bank, which combined with Orbit-Showtime represents 62% of Kipco’s value).

“The concentration of these two investments weighs negatively on KIPCO’s portfolio risk profile,” said Standard & Poor’s.

“Nevertheless, we take a positive view of KIPCO’s investment discipline throughout a difficult period for equity markets, which we believe supports its stand-alone credit profile,’ it added.

Orbit-Showtime is the oldest pay-TV operator in the region. Arch-rival Arab Radio & Television has confirmed it is exiting pay-TV. Orbit ‘merged’ with Showtime last July.

Story link: Kuwait’s KIPCO downgraded again

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