Digicel pushes $3bn bondholder deadline back yet again

Denis O’Brien telecoms group looking to push out loan repayment by two years

Denis O’Brien’s Caribbean telco Digicel has further extended the deadline for bondholders to sign up to a $3 billion (€2.6 billion) debt swap. Photograph: Getty Images

Denis O’Brien’s Caribbean telco Digicel has further extended the deadline for bondholders to sign up to a $3 billion (€2.6 billion) debt swap. Photograph: Getty Images

 

Denis O’Brien’s Caribbean telco Digicel has further extended the deadline for bondholders to sign up to a $3 billion (€2.6 billion) debt swap, which the group wants to push through to ease the burden of its $6.7 billion pile of borrowings.

Digicel announced on Monday night that the deadline for acceptance of its offer, which has been resisted by some creditors, is to be pushed out to one minute before midnight (east coast US time) on November 2nd.

The deadline for acceptance of the proposed bond swap had originally been set for the last Friday in September, before it was pushed back to October 19th, and then again last night until the first Friday of next month.

Mr O’Brien’s company wants holders of two note classes to accept new terms, effectively giving the group a further two years to pay the debts owed.

The request by Digicel applies to $2 billion of debts due for repayment in 2020, which it wants to push out until 2022; and $1 billion notes due in 2022, for which it wants to delay repayment until 2024.

Digicel said it remains in “constructive” talks with an ad-hoc group of bondholders about the proposed debt swaps.

In addition to the proposed debt swaps, Digicel, which has about 14 million subscribers across the Caribbean, Latin American and Pacific regions, has vowed to address its debt problems with a series of asset sales and cost cuts.