SBD Global/July 29, 2013/Finance

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  • Private Equity Firm CVC Trims Borrowing Costs For $2.5B Formula One Loan

    Private equity firm CVC has refinanced a $2.5B loan with the Royal Bank of Scotland and Goldman Sachs to reduce the borrowing costs of F1, "the motorsport series which it controls," according to Christian Sylt of the London TELEGRAPH. F1's debt was not close to its maturity date, "but CVC refinanced it to take advantage of record low yields in the global leveraged loan markets." Since buying F1, CVC has refinanced the debt several times and has returned around $3.7B to its investors "from dividends and selling roughly half of its stake." It owns 35.5% and "is hoping to exit through an initial public offering" on the Singapore Stock Exchange. The IPO was due in June last year, "but was delayed due to the eurozone crisis." On the issue of the refinancing, a source close to CVC said that "because the market was hot there was an opportunity to change the price of the debt from around 6 percent all-in to around 4 percent all-in. We took 200 basis points off the cost of the debt." Documents show the loan was refinanced on June 25 and the source said that "it is due for repayment in five years." It "is expected to affect F1's bottom line" (TELEGRAPH, 7/27).

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