Fitch May Withdraw Campbell Soup (CPB) Ratings

November 7, 2012 5:39 PM EST
Fitch Ratings is considering withdrawing the ratings on Campbell Soup Company (NYSE: CPB) (Campbell's) for business reasons. Fitch currently rates Campbells as follows:

--Long-term Issuer Default Rating (IDR) 'A-';

--Senior unsecured debt 'A-';

--Senior unsecured credit facility 'A-';

--Short-term IDR 'F2';

--Commercial paper (CP) 'F2'.

The Rating Outlook is Stable.

Fitch reserves the right in its sole discretion to withdraw or maintain any rating at any time for any reason it deems sufficient. Fitch believes that investors benefit from increased rating coverage by Fitch and is providing 60 days notice to the market on the potential withdrawal of Campbell's ratings as a courtesy to investors.

Fitch's last rating action occurred on July 10, 2012. Fitch downgraded Campbell's long-term rating to 'A-' from 'A' and downgraded the short-term ratings to 'F2' from 'F1'. The downgrades reflect the company's higher than expected leverage from the $1.55 billion debt financed Bolthouse Farms acquisition, signaling a more aggressive financial strategy. On Aug. 3, 2012, Campbell's issued $1.25 billion in new senior notes, with plans to use the net proceeds to finance the acquisition.

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