Morningstar, Inc. , a provider of independent investment research, recently announced it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire DBRS for a purchase price of $669 million. The combination of DBRS with Morningstar Credit Ratings’ U.S. business will expand global asset class coverage and provide an enhanced platform for providing investors with leading fixed-income analysis and research.
“The chance to empower investors with the independent research and opinions they need across a multitude of securities first drove our decision to enter the credit ratings business,” said Morningstar CEO Kunal Kapoor. “DBRS and Morningstar share research-centric cultures committed to rigor and independence. Together, we believe we can elevate the industry with the world’s first fintech ratings agency backed by state-of-the-art models, modern technology, and expert research teams that issuers and investors can count on to deliver transparent and independent ratings.”
DBRS reported $167 million USD in revenue for the fiscal year ended November 30, 2018. The business generates strong cash flow with operating margins that are consistent with Morningstar’s overall business. On a preliminary pro forma basis, if Morningstar owned DBRS as of Dec. 31, 2018, revenue from credit ratings would have represented approximately 17% of Morningstar’s total revenue.
"DBRS’s more than 40 years of experience and success coupled with Morningstar’s proven capabilities will offer an even stronger global alternative to larger ratings agencies," said DBRS Chief Executive Officer Stephen Joynt. "Both DBRS and Morningstar are driven by similar core values that aim to bring more clarity, diversity, transparency, and responsiveness to the ratings process, which makes Morningstar a perfect fit for us."