Press Release

VIS Assigns Initial Entity Ratings to The Searle Company Limited

Karachi, December 09, 2019: VIS Credit Rating Company Ltd. (VIS) has assigned initial entity ratings of ‘AA-/A-1’ (Double A Minus/A-One) to The Searle Company Limited (SCL). Outlook on the assigned ratings is ‘Stable’. Long Term Rating of ‘AA-’ reflects high credit quality, strong protection factors, and moderate risk but may vary slightly because of economic conditions. Short Term Rating of ‘A-1’ indicates high certainty of timely payment, excellent liquidity factors supported by good fundamental protection factors and minor risk factors.

Ratings assigned to SCL incorporate the Company’s strong market position & franchise, diversified product portfolio & therapeutic area coverage and high relative market share of top 10 products vis-à-vis competing brands. Ratings also reflect low business risk profile of the pharmaceutical industry where revenues of the sector will continue to be supported by growing population and increasing life expectancy (implying increase in elderly population) and continuous emergence of diseases. Ratings also reflect sound financial profile of SCL with low leveraged capital structure and healthy cash flow coverages. While remaining within manageable levels, cash flow coverages and leverage indicators are expected to weaken over the next one year as additional debt is undertaken. However, VIS expects healthy internal capital generation over the rating horizon to result in gradual reduction in leverage indicators and improvement in cash flow coverages. Ratings remain dependent on reduction in leverage indicators over the rating horizon, maintaining healthy cash flow coverages and sound debt servicing ability.

SCL’s product portfolio is well diversified comprising 100+ products catering to over 19 therapeutic segments with overall 93% therapeutic area-wise coverage. Top five leading revenue generating therapeutic areas are alimentary tract & metabolism, cardiovascular, respiratory, nervous and musculo-skeletal system which represented four-fifth of topline during FY19. Product concentration risk is considered on the lower side with top five brands accounting for around two-fifth of total revenue. SCL’s established distribution network along with extensive doctor and pharmacy coverage supports sales growth.

Recently, board of directors of SCL gave approval for acquisition of 100% shareholding in Luna Pakistan (Private) Limited which indirectly owns 100% of the issued share capital of OBS Pakistan (Private) Limited (OBS Pakistan) from Universal Ventures (Private) Limited (UVPL). Once the acquisition is complete, OBS Pakistan will become a wholly owned subsidiary of SCL. The acquisition is projected to translate into higher consolidated profitability where cost synergies within group along with healthy sales growth is expected to result in turnaround in profitability of OBS Pakistan.

For further information on this rating announcement, please contact Mr. Talha Iqbal (Ext: 213) or the undersigned (Ext: 201) at (021) 35311861-66 or email at

Javed Callea

Applicable Rating Criteria: Industrial Corporates (May 2016)

Information herein was obtained from sources believed to be accurate and reliable; however, VIS Credit Rating Company Limited (VIS) does not guarantee the accuracy, adequacy or completeness of any information and is not responsible for any errors or omissions or for the results obtained from the use of such information.VIS , the analysts involved in the rating process and members of its rating committee do not have any conflict of interest relating to the rating(s)/ranking(s) mentioned in this report.VIS is not an NRSRO and its credit ratings are not NRSRO credit ratings.VIS is paid a fee for most rating assignments. This rating/ranking is an opinion and is not a recommendation to buy or sell any securities. Copyright 2019 VIS Credit Rating Company Limited . All rights reserved. Contents may be used by news media with credit to VIS .

VIS Credit Rating Company Limited