The 75 million euros of bridge loan provided to Astaldi by the Fortress Investment Fund (see the press release here) arrived yesterday, as a result of the authorization of the Court of Rome obtained early in January on the subject of pre-deductible finance, which will serve to support the operations of the construction ordersof the construction group in financial crisis listed on the Italian Stock Exchange (see here a previous post by BeBeez). Among these are, for example, Milan subway Metro 4, in a consortium with Salini-Impregilo construction group, and Metro C in Rome.
Astaldi has until tomorrow 14 February to present the composition proposal to the Court of Rome. In mid-October, the group had been admitted by the Court of Rome to the so-called “blank arrangement procedure” (see the press release here) and in mid-December the group had asked the Court for the possibility of collecting new non-deductible finance (see the press release here).
The loan was structured in the form of super-senior secured bonds, guaranteed by an inclusive security package, among other things, of “assignment of receivables under guarantee or pledges granted (both by the company and by a subsidiary thereof) on loans subject to litigation or arbitration and other receivables related to works carried out with Italian and foreign counterparties “.
The security (ISIN IT0005359267) has maturity on 12 February 2022 and pays a quarterly floating coupon equal to the 3-month Euribor rate (with a minimum floor threshold of 1%) plus a margin of 11.25% for the first year (of which 6.5% may be paid using a so-called pay-if-you-can or PIYC mechanism), and 14.25% for subsequent years to maturity (of which 9.5% may be paid using a PIYC mechanism). The stock, intended solely for qualified investors, has been listed on the Third Market of the Wiener Boerse.
Meanwhile, yesterday, Il Messaggero, reports this morning, consultations have taken place among the lending banks of Astaldi, led by Unicredit and Intesa Sanpaolo, on the proposal formulated two days ago by the advisors (Vitale & co and Merrill Lynch) of the only candidate left in the race for the recapitalization, that is of Salini-Impregilo, after the Japanese of IHI have retreated: banks, exposed for a total of 3 billion euros, would have been asked to supply 200 million of new finance and renounce approximately 80% of their loans by converting them into equity or participatory financial instruments. Furthermore, the old proposal to issue 550 million of signing credits for contracts was to be relaunched. The most exposed bank (390 million) is Unicredit, but it is said to have sided against the deal, influencing the others.
At this point tomorrow Astaldi, assisted by its advisors Rothschild, Laghi and Gianni, Origoni, Grippo, Cappelli & Partners, should present to the Court of Rome an agreement plan that takes into account the binding offer, but conditional, approved yesterday from the board of directors of Salini Impregilo and that will be examined tonight by the board of Astaldi. The proposal provides for a reserved capital increase of 280 million euros and the creation of a segregated asset in a bad company in which all the assets under concession (such as participation in the management company of the Bosphorus bridge and the Gebze-Izmir Turkish motorway) are transferred , waiting to be sold to partially refund unsecured creditors, through participatory financial instruments. However it is still to be understood how Salini will be financed in turn. In this regard, even the hypothesis of a financial partner, perhaps a large private equity fund, is circulating on the market.