21 Dec 2009 19:01

Nutritek restructures 65% of debt

MOSCOW. Dec 21 (Interfax) - Nutritek has restructured 65% of its debt portfolio, the babyfood producer said in a statement.

The company has secured the consent of its main creditors to extend repayments by up to six years and for a grace on interest payments until the end of 2010.

Foreign creditors on December 21 approved a plan to restructure around $100 million in loan participation notes, which will be converted into a universal debt instrument which finally matures on June 30, 2015.

Thus, the foreign creditors, who are owed half of the group's debt, affirmed "the investment community's confidence in the company's business potential and the competence of the team," the press release said.

The group signed an agreement with UniCredit and HSBC on the extension of the principal debt repayment and grace period on interest. The restructuring of the group's ruble-denominated debt is going to plan and existing bonds will start to be exchanged for new bonds at the end of January.

Nutritek at the beginning of November placed a second issue of bonds totaling 1.32 billion rubles to refinance the first issue totaling 1.2 billion rubles, which went into technical default. The second issue was sold in a private placement in favor of CIJ Broker, which is the consultant for restructuring the Nutrinvestholding ruble bonds. The process of exchanging the first series bonds for the second has still not begun; the securities remain on CIJ Broker's balance sheet. Thus, there is little chance the end bond holders will demand their early redemption before receiving them.

The placement terms of the second issue provide for 4% of the face value to be redeemed at the end of 2010, 8% in the summer of 2011, and 10% every six months until the end of 2013, and then 38% on June 30, 2014.

Nutritek includes six baby food and special foods enterprises in Russia, Ukraine, Estonia and New Zealand, as well as retail and logistics concerns.