Lpc infront seeks 450 mln euro loan waiver for wanda buy

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May 26 Swiss sports marketing firm Infront Sports & Media is asking lenders to allow around 450 million euros ($489.47 million) of existing debt to stay in place to finance its buyout by China's Dalian Wanda Group, banking sources said on Tuesday. Wanda Group, China's largest property developer, agreed to buy a 68.2 percent stake of Infront for 1.05 billion euros in February from Bridgepoint. Three unidentified Chinese and global investors will take the remaining minority stake. Wanda considered new financing options to back the acquisition but decided to try and use existing debt if lenders agree to waive a change of control provision, the sources said.

When companies are bought, a change of control clause is usually triggered, which requires any existing debt to be repaid. Lenders are being asked to waive the change of control clause by Goldman Sachs, which is leading the request. Investors have been asked to commit to the deal by June 3, in return for a 25 basis point (bp) fee, the sources said.

Infront's existing debt includes a 53.3 million euro term loan A; a 200 million euro term loan B; a 70 million euro term loan C; an 85 million euro second lien; a 30 million euro revolving credit; and 10 million euro guarantee facility, the sources said.

Pricing is set to remain at 500bp on the term loans B and C and a second lien loan will pay 800bp, the sources said. The loans are expected to be refinanced in a year and a dividend could be paid to shareholders at the same time if the company performs well, the sources said. Infront focuses on distributing media rights for broadcasting sports events including the football World Cup and several Olympic winter sports. ($1 = 0.9194 euros)