Indebtedness: Altice offers itself a little respite

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Indebtedness: Altice offers itself a little respite

Finally some good news for Altice. Indebted to the tune of 60 billion euros, SFR’s parent company has delayed the repayment of most of its debts by two years, to 2027 instead of 2025. To do this, Altice International has raised a new loan of 800 million euros on the market, repayable in October 2027. With this refinancing operation, this entity regrouping in particular its activities abroad no longer has “a major maturity before 2027”.

According to The Echoes, Altice has passed an important test there vis-à-vis the markets since it is the first time that the telecom and media group has appealed to investors since the revelation, this summer, of the corruption scandal that shook its empire. He even got more than the 500 million euros initially expected.

Meo, Altice Dominicana, Teads in the trash

This breath of fresh air should allow Altice International to negotiate under more favorable conditions asset sales aimed at giving guarantees to the market. In Portugal, Patrick Drahi’s group has reportedly put up for sale Meo, the country’s leading operator, as well as the fiber deployment company FastFiber. He would expect ten billion euros from it.

Among the other assets housed in Altice International and likely to be sold, we find its subsidiary in the Dominican Republic. Bought in 2013 from Orange, Altice Dominicana, one of the main operators in the country, was valued, in 2017, at $ 2.5 billion.

In the trash, we finally find Teads, the French specialist in online advertising video, bought in 2017 for 285 million euros. According to The Echohowever, Altice would have tried to sell this subsidiary, two years later, not having obtained the hoped-for internal synergies. Then in 2021, the group planned to list Teads on the stock exchange in the United States, based on a valuation of 4 to 5 billion euros.

A refinancing operation that has a price

The economic daily reminds that the operation to refinance Altice International has a price. Altice should pay to its creditors” a cost about four times higher than its original debt line which matured in two years ». The rate would rise from 2.25% to 10%. The group is suffering the downgrading of its rating by the financial rating agencies as well as the rise in interest rates.

However, the risk taken by creditors is lower with Altice International than with other entities of the group. Its debt ratio rises, has calculated The Echoes, at 4.8 times its Ebitda – earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization – compared to 5.2 times for Altice France and 6.7 times for the activities in the United States (Altice USA).

If Patrick Drahi’s group has obtained a respite by 2027 where it will have to repay a total of some 13 billion euros, its subsidiary SFR will face, before that date, a deadline of 1.6 billion euros. In this context, Altice would be ready to sell part of the operator’s capital, its main asset in Europe. SFR and its activities in France would be valued at around 30 billion euros.

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