Debt-ridden cable-TV operator NTL – listed in the US but operating chiefly in Britain – has seen its credit rating cut by Standard & Poor’s after its failure to meet a scheduled $96 million (€109m; £67m) interest payment on Monday [WAMN: 02-Apr-02].
S&P reduced its rating of NTL, desperately trying to restructure its $17 billion debt mountain, from ‘CCC-’ to the bottom-most rung of ‘D’.
The cable firm says it missed the payment at the behest of bondholders, and has a thirty-day grace period to find the money. However, S&P suspects it will default deliberately to give bondholders the chance to take stakes in the company.
The rating agency is not convinced that NTL has enough cash to see it through its restructuring.
Data sourced from: MediaGuardian.co.uk; additional content by WARC staff