The €7.2bn loan backing the acquisition of Egypt’s Orascom by French building materials company Lafarge has been launched, arrangers BNP Paribas, Calyon and Morgan Stanley announced on Thursday. The proposed loan is the largest investment grade loan to launch to syndication so far this year.
The facility includes a €1.8bn, one-year bullet term loan with a 364-day extension option and a €2.3bn, two-year bullet term loan with a 364-day extension option, plus others. A bank presentation is scheduled to take place in Paris on January 16.
Banks are being invited to join at three levels, with lenders invited to commit €500m as mandated lead arrangers, €225m as lead arrangers and €100m as arrangers. Proceeds will also be used to refinance some of the existing debt at the Orascom level, a banker said.