Grupo de Inversiones Suramericana S.A. (Grupo SURA) hereby announces that this Tuesday Fitch Ratings announced that it had revised the Company's long-term international rating to "BB+" from its previous "BBB-" for which a stable outlook is maintained. In the light of this revision on the part of the aforementioned credit rating agency, Grupo SURA would like to make known that:
- This decision on the part of Fitch Ratings obeys a review of the average credit quality of the Company's portfolio and the transitory effects that the pandemic has had on the stream of dividends obtained from its investments in the financial and related services industry, that is to say, Suramericana and its insurance and trend/risk management subsidiaries and SURA Asset Management with its pension, savings, investment and asset management subsidiaries. This is supplemented by its interests as the main non-controlling shareholder of Bancolombia (banking and complementary services).
- The rating’s stable outlook reflects the strength of Grupo SURA's credit profile for accessing international markets with different instruments; its well-diversified sources of dividends in terms of industries and geographies, "healthy liquidity levels" that have been maintained throughout the current situation, as well as stable levels of net indebtedness in the short term.
- This change was also based on a recent review of Bancolombia's long-term international rating (BB + with a stable outlook), as a consequence of Colombia's sovereign rating being downgraded from “BBB -to “BB +” and its effect on the country's leading bank and other financial entities.
- It is worth noting that Fitch Ratings ratified the “BBB-“ rating issued last February to SURA Asset Management (SURA AM), given the relatively limited weight of the business in Colombia on the Company's consolidated earnings, given its role as the main private pension fund manager throughout Latin America.
- It is important to point out that Fitch Ratings maintains the same local long-term rating of "AAA", the highest possible for the Colombian market, along with a short-term rating of "F1", according to a report released at the end of February 2021, this based on methodology that ranked Peru as its sovereign ceiling, having obtained a higher rating than Colombia.
- Grupo SURA's Senior Management continues to focus its efforts on efficient cash flow management. The Company also maintains sufficient liquidity to meet its obligations and continue with its debt reduction plan for 2021. In fact, during the first quarter of this year, it amortized a total of COP 65,000 million and on May 18, it made a timely payment of USD 300 million on an issue of international bonds that became due and payable, as opportunely reported to the market.