Rating agency Moody’s has downgraded Aston Martin. The luxury car making is heading towards ‘junk’ status, observers warned.
“The review was prompted by a significant deterioration in Aston Martin’s liquidity profile as per end September 2012, caused by a much weaker cash generation and operating performance in the third quarter,” said Moody’s analyst Falk Frey in the statement.
The ratings agency added that if the debt-burdened company is unable to improve its liquidity by Christmas it could result in a serious downgrade “that might not be limited to one notch”.
There is, however, potential good news for the James Bond car company – two possible investors are understood to be vying for a 40% stake in the firm – India’s automotive company Mahindra & Mahindra and Italian private equity fund Investindustrial.
The firm’s owners – a consortium fronted by Kuwaiti group Investment Dar – purchased Aston Martin in 2007 for £479m. However, recent trading has been poor; for the first nine months of 2012 the company’s revenue was £305m, down 219%, principally as a result of a 20% slump in sales.