S&P Global Ratings affirmed its BBB long-term corporate credit and issue-level ratings on retail-focused Choice Properties Real Estate Investment Trust, following its agreement to acquire Canadian REIT.
The merger aims to create Canada's largest REIT, with an enterprise value of approximately C$16 billion.
The affirmation takes into account the rating agency's view that the planned merger increases Choice's geographic and tenant diversity, but is not sufficient for an upgrade on the REIT's stand-alone credit profile.
The stable outlook reflects S&P's view that the planned merger marginally improves the quality of the combined asset portfolio, with an enhanced focus on the six primary markets in Canada and improved tenant diversity.
S&P Global Ratings and S&P Global Market Intelligence are owned by S&P Global Inc.