S&P Upgrades Galveston Wharves Bond Rating on Strong Cruise Revenues

Carnival Jubilee in Galveston

Standard & Poor’s (S&P) Global Ratings upgraded Galveston Wharves’ revenue bonds from A minus to A, for the proposed issuance of up to $160 million to fund a fourth cruise terminal at the Port of Galveston.

According to S&P, “The upgrade reflects our view of the increasing revenues from cruise activity and associated parking revenues from investments made at the port, which we expect will sustain improved financial metrics.”

The outlook reflects S&P’s view that the port can meet its projected revenue, supported by the investments made while maintaining an improved financial risk profile, the report stated.

Additionally, Fitch Ratings has revised its outlook for the port’s revenue bonds from stable to positive, while holding its A minus rating. 

This summer, the port is gearing up to issue a revenue bond package of up to $160 million to fund the construction of a new cruise complex at Pier 16, which includes a terminal, parking garage and other enhancements, alongside bond issuance costs. Hilltop Securities and Piper Sandler Companies are serving as co-managers for the financing.

Rodger Rees, Galveston Wharves port director and CEO, said: “This independent evaluation points to a bright future for the port’s cruise business and our plans to reinvest port revenues in infrastructure to grow our cruise, cargo and commercial business sectors. This improved bond rating will allow us to fund the bonds at a lower interest rate, which is always great news.”

He added that this improved rating also is indicative of the strength of the port industry globally.


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