Heidelberg nears bank deal-sources

Heidelberg nears bank deal-sources
Published: 14 April 2009

HeidelbergCement is drawing closer to a deal with its banks to fill a EUR6bn refinancing hole, sources with direct knowledge of the matter said on Thursday.

The producer has seen borrowing costs soar, amid market worries that if earnings shrink, the company could be in breach of its loan terms, which would entitle banks to demand immediate repayment.

HeidelbergCement has to repay a EUR5bn bond in the middle of next year as well as other debts. Now sources close to the talks between the company and its banks say the group is close to agreeing a credit lifeline.

"We want to sort it out in the coming weeks," said one source close to the talks. A second source, however, cautioned that a deal by June was more realistic.

HeidelbergCement, which has said it is looking for new equity investors to shore up its finances, needs EUR2 to 3bn in fresh capital, one of the sources said.

"We are working on the restructuring of our finances and are keeping all options open," a spokeswoman for HeidelbergCement said. "So far, there is no result."
Source: Reuters