S&P Global Ratings has raised its rating from ‘BB-’ to ‘BB+’ on the senior-secured debt issued by Healthcare Support (Newcastle) Finance Plc. – the UK-based special purpose vehicle that is funding and designing two new facilities at the Newcastle-Upon-Tyne Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust.
The debt, comprising a £115 million senior secured European Investment Bank loan (due March 2038) and £197.8 million of senior secured bonds (due September 2041), will be used to construct facilities at the Freeman Hospital and Royal Victoria Infirmary, both in Newcastle-Upon-Tyne.
S&P’s improved rating reflects the project’s improved financial health following the settlement of a long-running construction dispute in August 2016. Given that the dispute’s conclusion marked the project’s transition from its construction to operational phase, the rating also indicates S&P’s assessment of the project’s new risks.
More information on the rating upgrade can be found on InfraNews.