Airtel Africa has announced the signing of a new $500m loan facility with a group of relationship banks to partially refinance the group’s €750m Euro-denominated bond (c.$880m) due May 20, 2021.
According to a statement signed by its Group Company Secretary, Simon O’Hara, on Wednesday, the banks that participated in the facility include, Bank of America, BNP Paribas, Citibank, HSBC, J.P. Morgan, Standard Chartered Bank, and two Indian relationship banks, Axis Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank.
O’Hara said the new committed facility consisted of a combination of a revolving credit facility and term loans with tenor of up to four years.
He stated that the balance of the Euro-denominated bond would be repaid with existing group cash to reduce gross debt and associated interest costs.
“The new loan facility further strengthens the core liquidity of the group,” the group said in the statement.
The telco also said it had prepayment flexibilities that would allow the group to optimise the efficiency of its capital structure with the free cash flows and cash receipts anticipated over the next 12 months, following the recent announcements related to tower sales and mobile money minority investments.