Johannesburg - ASPEN has secured two syndication loans of $2.03 billion (R20bn) and R7.33bn which it will use to finance its pending acquisition transactions.
The pharmaceuticals group said on Friday that the money would be used for its previously announced acquisition of product portfolios from Merck and GlaxoSmithKline and two other pre-identified acquisitions. It has already agreed to acquire manufacturing sites from both companies, 11 branded drugs from Merck, and a thrombosis medicine from GlaxoSmithKline.
Last week, during the publication of its financial results, Aspen said it planned to expand into former Soviet Union countries, and that it was concluding about five deals, mostly in emerging markets.
Part of the loan would be used to refinance the existing term bank debt of its Aspen Global unit.
The $2.03bn finance facility was launched into general syndication by Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Standard Bank as the initial mandated lead arrangers and bookrunners. Prior to this, a “very successful” senior syndication included Absa, Nedbank, FirstRand Bank, Investec, National Australia Bank and the Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ.
The debt facilities range from three- to five-year loans with initial interest margins of 2.4 to 2.5 percentage points.
Aspen said commitments for the syndication of the R7.33bn loan facilities came from the local banks and institutions. This funding had been allocated, it added.
“The [rand] facilities were 132 percent oversubscribed, resulting in scale back of the [rand] commitments. The oversubscription and subsequent scale back resulted in the [rand] sub-underwriting banks committing incremental liquidity to the US dollar denominated facilities,” the company said in a statement.
Aspen closed up 1.89 percent at R269 on the JSE on Friday. - Business Report