GCR’s overriding objective has always been to establish itself as the most credible and cost effective source of information in the marketplace and our exceptional market penetration reflects this subscriber emphasis. In view of the above, GCR established the largest subscriber base in the industry in less than 4 years.
GCR provides the full range of rating and research services, comprising:
- Banks and non-bank financial institutions (including building societies, discount houses, leasing companies, microfinanciers, servicer quality ratings, fund and asset manager ratings)
- Insurance, assurance, reinsurance & healthcare
- Corporates & industrial borrowers
- Parastatals, utilities & local authorities
- Structured finance & securitisation
GCR Africa provides these ratings and research services in a number of Southern, East and West African countries. In total the above sectors incorporate ratings and research on approximately 400 individual organisations. In the course of its rating activities GCR has also established very comprehensive statistical databases and strategic industry profiles in all sectors.
What subscribers receive
In each country, clients can choose which sectors they wish to subscribe to and are entitled to:
- The detailed rating reports issued on individual participants in the nominated sector.
- The regular industry bulletins compiled in each sector, incorporating a strategic industry overview and summarised profiles on all companies in the sector.
- The regular rating update bulletins and newsletters summarising all ratings/changes and commenting on topical credit risk issues.
- Access to individual senior analysts in order to discuss both company and industry related issues.
- Automatic placement in our “hot line” service whereby clients are electronically advised in the event of a development that we feel may adversely impact on a rating.
The Subscription Service is based on regions across Africa, comprising COMESA, ECOWAS, SADC and South Africa, as well as the sectors covered by GCR within those regions. The sectors currently comprise Corporates and Public Sector Debt, Insurance, Structured and Securitisations, and Financial Institutions. The annual cost to subscribe to one sector in one region is currently between US$3,500 and US$5,000, depending on the level of GCR’s coverage. A discount of between 10% and 30% can be applied for subscriptions to more than one sector in a particular region. GCR can also tailor a subscription to a client’s specific needs. Please refer to ‘Services and Support’ for contact information in this regard.
Key advantages of GCR’s subscription service, relative to other agencies.
- We have the greatest number of formal rating relationships in Africa (i.e. double that of all our competitors combined).
- To the best of our knowledge we are the only rating agency to have demonstrated both the capability and the willingness to provide vital “early warnings” in Africa (in times of potential counterparty loss) in recent years.
- We provide coverage on certain sectors and countries that are not covered by any other rating agency.
- Our subscription fees are currently the most competitive in the market.
- Most importantly, we pride ourselves on our ratings track record and our service levels.
The role of a rating agency is to independently differentiate credit quality across all industry sectors and investment instruments, with the purpose of providing investors with the information on which to base appropriate investment and pricing decisions. Accordingly, a formal rating provides an independent and internationally recognised measurement of an organisation’s financial strength.
In the final analysis, a rating agency is judged on the accuracy of its ratings over a prolonged period of time, and its track record for pro - actively (rather than reactively) adjusting its ratings to take into account changing circumstances over time. When the agency can prove that there is a great deal of correlation between its rating symbols and probability of default, then the market can place reliance on these ratings for purposes of establishing investment/counterparty limits, pricing for credit risk and monitoring credit exposures. This is where the likes of S&P and Moody’s have established such a strong track record in the US and other developed markets.
Crucially, GCR has now established an unrivalled track record for ratings accuracy in emerging markets, with an overall local currency national scale cumulative default ratio for ratings in the BBB- and above categories of only 3.0% over the past 10 years (despite the global crisis, severe emerging market volatility and “systemic shocks”).
GCR’s core competitive advantage is based on the principal of “analytical excellence”, market penetration and distribution.
- A large subscriber base - GCR has the largest subscriber base in the market, encompassing over 700 local and international issuing and investing institutions.
- Market leadership in Africa - GCR currently occupies the market leadership position in all rating sectors, rating more companies in Africa than all other rating agencies combined.
- Proven ratings accuracy and analytical excellence - GCR’s unrivalled record with regards to rating accuracy has earned the company significant respect amongst the investing community, facilitating improved risk pricing.
- Highly competitive pricing - Due to GCR’s substantial scale economies, GCR is able to charge rating and subscription fees that are considerably lower than the competition (typically less than half).
- Full regulatory recognition - GCR is officially accredited in all markets in which it operates (where such accreditation has been made a requirement), in fact being the ONLY international agency that can boast this feat in Africa at this point in time (please refer to ‘Ratings Information’ for further details).
- Extensive coverage - GCR’s ratings feature widely in leading and international financial journals, while GCR’s ratings are also available on all Bloomberg’s terminals.