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Ratings boost for Cell C

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Moody's Investors Service has upgraded Cell C's ratings in five categories, following the company's ongoing performance improvement and the purchase by Saudi Telecom of a 35% equity stake in Oger Telecom which owns 75% of Cell C.

"These upgrades are a positive statement of confidence in Cell C and its strengthening position in the market," says Cell C's chief financial officer, Fabrizio Mambrini.
"Despite the global economic meltdown and the loss of value on major stock markets around the world, Cell C has managed to swim against the economic tide and achieved rating upgrades in three categories.
"This also reflects the success of our turn-around strategy, the effectiveness of our innovative products and services and the ongoing commitment of our staff."
Cell C's Corporate Family Rating and Probability of Default ratings have been upgraded to B3 from Caa1. Senior Secured Notes due 2012 have been upgraded to B2 from B3 and Senior Subordinated Notes due 2015 to Caa2 from Caa3.
"Thanks in part to the positive reaction to the purchase by Saudi Oger of USD and EUR bonds issued by Cell C, Moody's has upgraded the rating outlook from 'Rating under Review' to 'Stable'," adds Mambrini.
The unaudited half-year results recently issued by Cell C, showed strong subscriber growth and an improved operating profit was also recorded.
"We expect consistent growth and increase in market share as we embed improvements in customer service, network quality and the development of products and services that meet our customers' needs," says Mambrini.
"The improved Moody's ratings points to a growing industry expectation that Cell C will continue to deliver sustainable improvements in operating performance."