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United Kingdom : £360m capital refinancing plan completed by Courier s owners

June 30, 2014

Johnston Press, owner of the Halifax Courier, has effectively finished its 360m capital refinancing plan, having raised 140m from a rights issue and a further 220m from a new fixed rate bond.

The media company, which possesses 250 newspapers and approximately 200 local news and e-commerce websites, declared its plan to refinance in May as part of plans to fund future business growth.

Shareholders took up 92.25% of some 4.6 billion new shares that were issued and the company s underwriters, Panmure Gordon and JP Morgan Cazenove, secured investors for the remaining 7.75%. The new shares are at present trading on the stock exchange.

Besides, broadcasting giant Sky signed into an innovative strategic regional partnership with Johnston Press, deciding to a 5m investment. Sky under the terms of the agreement has made available its new product, Sky AdSmart Local, to part of Johnston Press extensive sales network with a view to rolling it out further at a later date.

The new finance package has peritted the company to pay off its 300m bank debt and run with a new, decreased debt of 225m. This comes with a decreased interest rate so Johnston.

Chief executive Ashley Highfield said: Our new financial arrangements represent a considerable achievement and demonstrate a high level of confidence externally in our strategy and our future growth. We are in a more stable position to move forward and I am confident the share price will move upwards as we start to achieve our strategic aims.

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Source: TendersInfo (India)

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