Etisalat agrees US$4.4bn loan

Etisalat agrees US$4.4bn loan

Published: April 29, 2014

Syndicated facility from 17 banks will help UAE-based telecoms company finance acquisition of Maroc Telecom.

Etisalat, a UAE-based telecoms company, has agreed a syndicated loan worth €3.15bn (US$4.4bn). The money will go towards the company’s acquisition of a 53% stake in Maroc Telecom, valued at US$5.7bn, from French mobile operator Vivendi.

The funds come from a group of 17 local, regional and international banks, the identities of which were not given by the bank in its announcement of the deal. Financing consists of two facilities that can be utilised in either euros or US dollars. The first is a 12-month bridge loan worth €2.1bn, priced at EURIBOR plus 45 basis points for the first six months but increasing by 15 basis points in each of the following three months. The second is a three-year bullet term loan worth €1.05bn at a price of EURIBOR plus 87 basis points.

The company’s chief financial officer confirmed that, due to low interest rates and the desire to maintain dividend levels, it would seek funding through a loan rather than spend its own cash.