Business Irish

Wednesday 13 December 2017

€43m share of Eircom debt sold for knockdown price

Donal O'Donovan

Donal O'Donovan

A €43m stake in Eircom's debt has been traded for a knock-down price, just months after the company had billions of euro in loans forgiven in a record-breaking examinership.

The Irish Independent has learned that the €43m share of the company's remaining €2.3bn of debt was auctioned on Thursday in a privately arranged sale by a German bank.

The debt is understood to have changed hands at a price of 86 cent in the euro. That suggests the market values Eircom's remaining debts at under €2bn, not the nominal €2.3bn.

More than 200 banks and investment funds hold Eircom debt. US investor Blackstone holds the largest single stake.

Last year, the lenders backed a scheme that wiped out 40pc of Eircom's debts and saw the shareholdings of former owners STT of Singapore and an employee share trust wiped out.

Under that agreement, the new owners agreed that any lenders who sell a share of the debt they are owed must also part with a proportionate amount of their shares.

This is designed to ensure the lenders do not become embroiled in a second battle with the company and its owners after last year's crisis.

Irish Independent

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