ABS-CBN signs P10-B loan for debt refinancing, expansion

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 29 2010 04:09 PM | Updated as of Oct 30 2010 12:12 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Multimedia giant ABS-CBN Corporation signed a 7-year P10 billion syndicated term loan agreement with 8 banks to refinance existing loans and fund expansion plans.

In a statement on Friday, ABS-CBN said that bulk, or P6.6 billion of the entire loan, will be used for debt fefinancing, while P3.4 billion will fund capital expenditures in digital terrestrial TV infrastructure and the continuing expansion requirements for cable TV, among others.

It added that it is "taking advantafe of prevailing low interest rates and its stronger financial performance in recent years."

The country's largest multimedia conglomerate will save about P92 million in interest expenses as the new loan, which has a fixed rate and floating rate portions, was priced at 65 basis points over the 7-year PDST-F benchmark and the 3-month PDST-F, respectively.

The consortium of banks -- Bank of the Philippine Islands, Banco de Oro , Security Bank, Insular Life, Allied Bank and AlliedBank Savings, and PNB and PNB Life -- structured the loan as an unsecured and unsubordinated bullet and partly amortizing. It matures in 2017.

BPI Capital Corporation acted as Lead Arranger and Sole Book-runner for the transaction. BDO Capital and Security Bank acted as loan arrangers, while PNB Capital and Insular Life were co-arrangers. BPI's Asset Management and Trust Group will serve as the loan's facility agent.

The loan was signed by ABS-CBN president and chief operating officer Ma. Rosario Santos-Concio and chief finance officer Rolando P. Valdueza.

"The oversubscribed order book for our debt refinancing and new debt is a clear manifestation of how our partnership has grown over the years," Valdueza said.

abs-cbnnews.com is the online news arm of ABS-CBN News and Current Affairs, a subsidiary of ABS-CBN Corporation.