French internet service provider (ISP) Numericable has secured EUR11.64 billion (USD16.12 billion) worth of loans to support the acquisition of domestic telco SFR, a subsidiary of French media group Vivendi. The financing includes a EUR5.6 billion six-year ‘term loan B’ (consisting of EUR2.6 billion tranche and a EUR3 billion tranche denominated in dollars) and EUR6.04 billion-equivalent of bonds. The package also includes a EUR750 million five-year revolving credit facility. The debt has been underwritten by nine banks – Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan (also acting as global co-ordinators), and joint bookrunners Barclays, BNP Paribas, Credit Agricole, Credit Suisse, ING and Morgan Stanley.
As previously reported by TeleGeography’s CommsUpdate, Vivendi announced on 5 April 2014 that its Supervisory Board had accepted a takeover offer for its domestic telecoms unit SFR from Numericable (and its majority shareholder Altice Group of Luxembourg), which involves a EUR13.5 billion cash payment and gives Vivendi a 20% stake in the resultant SFR-Numericable group. Following the deal’s announcement, Numericable revealed that it will launch a rights issue worth up to EUR4.7 billion to help fund the acquisition of SFR, to be guaranteed by the holding company of Altice/Numericable financial backer Patrick Drahi. The remaining EUR8.8 billion of the cash price tag will be funded by debt.