On 5 May 2015 Akenerji Elektrik Üretim A.Ş. began consultations with Yapi Kredi Bankasi A.S. over a loan package in excess of US$1bn to refinance its existing debt obligations, reduce its overall cost of debt and to diversify its currency debt and limit its FX exposure.
A final loan agreement was signed on 30 September 2015 for a total value of US$1.1bn.
The US$1.1bn facility carries a 12-year tenor with a 1-year grace period, and was used to refinance existing medium term debt from a consortium of 10 financial institutions. The outstanding bank debt carried tenors of between 5 and 6 years.
The deal’s final value and structure was contingent on the completion of a separate M&A deal. Towards the end of 2015, the company was considering divesting one of its hydropower plants, a deal that closed in February 2016. The company utilized US$900mn and TL520mn and after selling one of its hydro power plant, paid US$100mn back, leaving that in addition to a US$800mn component.
Given the loan size the company said it was able to secure very favourable pricing, which came in at a lower margin overall than the facilities being refinanced.
Overall, the deal helped Akenerji streamline its debt repayments and extend its maturities.
“Our previous loans were extremely diverse and carried different amortization terms – some repaid in equal payments, some in bullet payments; our debt was denominated in a broad range of currencies; we were engaged with a number of banks, which means whenever we have to contemplate a change in structure or similar undertaking, we had to engage with a fairly broad range of stakeholders,” Özge Özen, Deputy CFO at Akenerji.
“The new deal allowed us to simplify our debt repayments schedule and overall structure and reduce the number of stakeholders we needed to engage with on bank debt, which smoothed things out operationally, and materially improved our stable cash flows.”