Ascendis extends talks with lenders


Ascendis extends talks with lenders


Published Date: 2021-05-03 | Source: Stephen Gunnion | Author: Stephen Gunnion

Ascendis extends talks with lenders

The pharmaceuticals and healthcare group says an announcement on its recapitalisation deal will be made as soon as negotiations are finalised.

Ascendis Health says its lenders have agreed to extend the deadline for agreement to be reached on a recapitalisation until 11 May. That's as discussions with its two biggest lenders, Blantyre and L1 Health continue, with progress being made towards finalisation of a recapitalisation.

In an update on Friday, the pharmaceuticals and healthcare group said its forbearance creditors agreed to extend the forbearance period until the close of business on 11 May. The extension means action won't be taken against it for missing interest payments or defaulting on loans.

In March, L1 Health and Blantyre gave Ascendis until 30 April to reach agreement on how to recapitalise the group and reduce debt of about R7-billion. The two lenders have combined exposure to its debt of more than 75%. This means they control all waivers, deferrals and consents requiring majority lender approval under the group's Senior Facilities Agreement. Earlier this year, they ruled out the disposal of core assets including its lucrative Remedica business in Cyprus in favour of other recapitalisation options.

Ascendis said a detailed announcement on the recapitalisation would be published on the JSE's news service as soon as negotiations were finalised and within the prescribed timeframes set out in the exchange's listings requirements.

Any deal may result in the company exchanging stakes in its underlying businesses in return for reducing net debt. If agreement is reached, shareholders will get to vote on the agreement.

The company's shares fell 5% to 57c on Friday. The announcement was made shortly before the close of trade.


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