S&P raises Dunkin' Brand's corporate credit, senior secured bank credit facilities rating to B+ from B, still in junk territory but one step from investment grade, citing company's IPO this summer

NEW YORK , October 7, 2011 () – Standard & Poor's raised its ratings on Dunkin' Brands Inc. Thursday in light of the company's initial public offering this summer.

Dunkin' Brands, which owns Dunkin' Donuts and the Baskin-Robbins ice cream chain, found at the July offering that investors had a taste for its stock.

Standard & Poor's Ratings Services said the chain has used the proceeds from the IPO to repay its debt. In turn, S&P raised the company's corporate credit rating and rating on its senior secured bank credit facilities one notch to "B+" from "B", which remains in junk territory but puts Dunkin Brands' debt one step away from investment grade. S&P's outlook for the debt is stable.

Standard & Poor's credit analyst Andy Sookram said the company will continue to pay down debt and expects new store openings and new menu offerings to boost earnings.

The company is the seventh-biggest restaurant operator by revenue in the U.S.

Shares of Dunkin' fell 18 cents to close at $28.24 Thursday.

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