The BB- issuer credit rating is driven by moderate business risks mainly characterised by the moderate cyclicality of the Swiss waste market, long-term market growth potential spurred by structural change, high barriers to entry due to regulation and high investment requirements and Helvetia’s leading market position in a fragmented market with a diversified customer portfolio across various industries. Slightly increased to increased financial risks weigh on Helvetia’s issue credit rating mainly as a consequence of constrained key credit ratios due to a quickly growing asset base coupled with lagging operational performance and rather low capital returns and increased net debt/EBITDA ratios. Nevertheless, we recognise the shareholders’ long-term financial commitment, the generally stable operating cash flows ensured by a wide client base and mid-term contracts as well as the still adequate financial flexibility. The rating outlook was revised from “watch negative” to “stable” mainly due to a clearer view on the short term implications of the COVID-19 pandemic situation.
Helvetia Environnement Groupe SA (HEG) historically operates in the waste collection, waste sorting, waste-to-materials and waste-to-energy sector in the French-speaking part of Switzerland, Romandie. With the acquisition of Swiss Recycling Services SA (SRS) in February 2017, HEG became the market leader in Switzerland. SRS is operating in the north of Romandie and used to belong to French Veolia Environnement group in the past. In 2018 HEG acquired a stake in the family-owned, Roche-based, recycling firm Constantin SA, which enabled HEG to expand its capacities and increase the treated waste volume. HEG was founded in 2000 and is based in Geneva. At the end of 2019, HEG employed a workforce of around 500 and had generated revenues totalling CHF 117 million.
Euler Hermes Rating GmbH (Euler Hermes Rating) was founded in 2001 as an independent European rating agency of the Euler Hermes and Allianz Group focusing on issuer and issuance ratings. Euler Hermes Rating is registered as a credit rating agency (CRA) in accordance with Regulation (EC) No 1060/2009 of the European Parliament and Council (as amended) and is considered as an external credit assessment institution (ECAI) by the European Banking Authority (EBA). Euler Hermes Rating is a subsidiary of Euler Hermes (ELE:PA), the world leader in trade credit insurance.
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