In order to finance the acquisition in France, already announced, to strengthen the balance sheet as a result of increasing activity, and to make the debt structure more long term, Aker Yards is currently working on re-financing its debt. The current business environment allows the Group to obtain a more optimal debt structure. This includes refinancing of the existing syndicated bank loan, increasing the loan to NOK 1 bn, with maturity in 2011, and the issue of two new, seven year bonds.
Aker Yards ASA has decided to issue two new Bond loans with a combined total loan amount of up to NOK 600 million. Pareto Securities ASA and DnB NOR Markets have been mandated as arrangers for the new bond issues. The bonds will be senior unsecured, carry a coupon of Nibor/ Swap plus 2.50 percentage points, and will mature in April 2013. Settlement date for the two bond loans is expected to be 5 April 2006.
On the 4 January 2006 Aker Yards announced that it has the intention of joining forces with the French shipyard company Alstom Marine. This acquisition implies needs for changes in the loan agreements in the existing bond loans of AKY01 (ISIN NO 001 23151.7) and AKY02 (ISIN NO 001 023977.5). A summons to bondholders meeting has been sent to the existing bondholders today. Subject to an approval from the bondholders of these presented changes, a voluntary buy-back offer will be offered to the existing bondholder of the two existing loans. See separate press release for further information.
Issuance of the two new bond loans will also be subject to an approval by the bondholders of the presented changes in the Loan Agreement of AKY01 ( ISIN NO 001023151.7) and AKY02 (ISIN NO 001023977.5) prior to the Settlement Date.
For further information, please contact:
Aker Yards ASA
Leif Borge, CFO
tel. +47 24 13 01 26
Tore Langballe, SVP Communications and IR,
tel. +47 90 777 841
Aker Yards ASA is an international shipbuilding group focusing on sophisticated vessels. The group has a strong position both in terms of innovation, product range, technology, experience and capacity. The product range includes cruise vessels & ferries, merchant vessels, offshore & specialized vessels. Aker Yards, with an annual turnover of euro 2 bn, comprises 13 yards in Norway, Finland, Germany, Romania and Brazil and has approximately 13,000 employees. In Finland Aker Yards has three yards: in Turku, Helsinki and Rauma.
Aker Yards is part of the Aker Group (www.akerasa.com), a leading multi-industry powerhouse with more than 40,000 employees and EUR 7.5 billion revenues. Aker owns 55.6 per cent of Aker Yards, and the group is also a significant participant in the oil & gas business as well as the fisheries industry.