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LONDON, March 28 (Reuters) - Liberty Global's Belgian cable and mobile company Telenet has launched a US$1.8bn-equivalent leveraged loan refinancing to reduce the cost of its debt following a ratings upgrade, banking sources said.
Telenet’s corporate family and issue rating was upgraded by Moody’s on March 27 to Ba3 from B1. It also received a ratings upgrade from S&P on February 22 to BB- from B+.
Telenet is now looking to shave up to 50bp off of its loans with a new €750m, March 2026 term loan AH, guided to pay 275bp-300bp over Euribor and a US$1bn, June 2025 term loan AI, guided to pay 250bp-275bp over Libor.
Both are offered with a 0% floor at 99.75 OID.
They will refinance part of an existing €1.6bn term loan AE and US$1.5bn term loan AF, due January 2025, raised in November 2016. That euro loan pays 325bp over Euribor with a 0% floor, while the dollar pays 300bp over Libor, with a 0% floor.
The loans are offered with 101 soft-call for six months.
The size of the new loans could increase to refinance more of the existing loans, depending on investor demand, the sources said.
Lenders have been asked to commit to the financing by March 31, with funding due on May 4 after soft call on the current loans expires on May 3.
BNP Paribas is leading the euro tranche, alongside JP Morgan, Deutsche Bank, Rabobank, RBC, NatWest Markets and Societe Generale.
JP Morgan is leading the dollar tranche, alongside BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank, Rabobank, RBC, NatWest Markets and Scotiabank.
The upgrade comes on an improved business profile and Ebitda growth prospects following Telenet’s acquisition of Belgian mobile firm BASE in February 2016 and the proposed acquisition of SFR’s businesses in Belgium and Luxembourg, as well as a moderate leverage profile and continued healthy free cash flow generation, according to Moody’s.
Editing by Christopher Mangham