18 Dec 2017 13:58

Nornickel raises $2.5 bln syndicated loan

MOSCOW. Dec 18 (Interfax) - Norilsk Nickel (Nornickel) is raising a syndicated loan of up to $2.5 billion, the Russian mining giant said in a statement.

The syndicate includes Raiffeisenbank, Unicredit, China Construction Bank Corporation, Citibank, Commerzbank, Credit Agricole, HSBC, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, ING Bank, JPMorgan, Mizuho, Nordea Bank, Sumitomo Mitsui, The Bank of Tokyo, CIB Bank and Vseobecna uverova banka.

One of the purposes of the loan is refinancing, the company said.

The deal was closed on December 15.

The new debt will not affect the company's net debt/EBITDA ratio. "The company took advantage of a very favorable situation in the banking financing segment of the debt market and prepared a deal that enables us to improve our debt retirement profile and lower the cost of servicing it," a company representative said.

Nornickel's net debt was $5.6 billion at end-2017 and net debt/EBITDA was 1.5x. Nornickel expects net debt/EBITDA of 1.5x - 2.5x for 2017. The 1.8x is the highest level at which shareholders can expect to receive dividends amounting to 60% of EBITDA. According to the company's dividend policy, the size of dividends is calculated on the basis of the net debt/EBITDA ratio. If this figure is lower than 1.8x, then dividends will amount to 60% of EBITDA. If the figure is more than 2.2x, then 30% of EBITDA. The share of EBITDA in the range of 30% and 60% will be calculated inversely to the coefficient, if the level of net debt to EBITDA is between 1.8x and 2.2x.