S&P Cuts Hollinger Credit Rating

By: Mark Fitzgerald

Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services last week lowered its long-term corporate credit rating on Hollinger Inc. to CCC+ from BB-. The move came after the Conrad Black-controlled holding company warned of its “uncertainty regarding the company’s ability to meet its future financial obligations” if holders of certain preferred or common retractable common shares exercised their right to convert them to cash.

Hollinger Inc. — parent of Hollinger International Inc., which publishes the Chicago Sun-Times and other dailies — also revealed that two of Black’s private holding companies, Ravelston Corp. and Ravelston Management Inc., have been informally funding shortfalls that have occurred because fees and dividends from its subsidiaries have not been enough to meet its financial obligations.

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