Hillenbrand to start with lower S&P rating

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Standard & Poor’s plans to rate the corporate credit and debt of Hillenbrand Industries Inc. at a BBB- rating instead of its current A- after the Batesville company spins off its Batesville Casket Co. business on March 24.

Hillenbrand, which focuses on hospital beds and other health care equipment, is receiving the downgrade because the company will be less diversified, S&P said. It will be renamed Hill-Rom Holdings Inc. at the separation.

Batesville Casket will take the corporate name of Hillenbrand Inc.

Both companies will trade on the New York Stock Exchange. Hill-Rom Holdings will have the ticker HRC, and Hillenbrand will be HI.

The companies will remain headquartered in Batesville, which is between Indianapolis and Cincinnati.

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