Thursday, March 19, 2009

MTN Cote d'Ivoire Obtains Finance for Expansion

Citibank has announced the successful closure and signing of a XOF 76.1 billion (US$150 million) financing in favor of MTN Cote d'Ivoire. The bank noted that this is the largest locally raised XOF syndicated term loan facility for an Ivorian corporate borrower.

MTN borrowed the money to finance the capital expenditure requirements of its network rollout and for the consolidation of its existing debt.

The facility, which was launched at XOF 60 billion (US$120 million), has been increased to XOF 76.1 billion (US$150 million) following strong oversubscription from lenders - which makes a change for the current economic climate.

"The successful closure of this loan facility is an indication of the confidence that banks have in our company," said MTN Regional Vice President, Christian De Faria. "It also reflects the confidence that both MTN Cote d'Ivoire and the financial sector have in the Ivorian economy."

"In the past, we had heavily relied on bilateral facilities from individual banks with diverse maturities, terms and conditions," he added. "Now dealing with one single syndicated loan helps us ease the burden of managing several different facilities and further provided the opportunity to redefine our relationship with partner banks."

"The transaction came at a time of significant challenges both in the local and international capital markets," Martin A. Mugambi, Director & Africa Head of Corporate Finance for Citi added, "In this challenging environment, a total of nine local banks were able to participate in this successful transaction which testifies to the strength of the local bank market".

The nine participating institutions are Citibank N.A, Bank of Africa Cote d'Ivoire, Banque Internationale pour l'Afrique de l'Ouest Cote d'Ivoire, Ecobank Cote d'Ivoire, Omnifinance, Societe Generale de Banque de Cote d'Ivoire, Societe Ivoirienne de Banque, Standard Chartered Cote d'Ivoire and United Bank of Africa Cote d'Ivoire.

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