RPT-Fitch Affirms First Quantum at 'BB'; Assigns Exchange Notes Final Rating
(Repeat for additional subscribers)
Feb 18 (Reuters) - (The following statement was released by the rating agency)
Fitch Ratings has affirmed Canada-based First Quantum Minerals Ltd's (FQM) Issuer Default Rating (IDR) and senior unsecured ratings at 'BB' and removed them from Rating Watch Negative (RWN). Fitch has also assigned the exchange notes due in 2020 and 2021 a 'BB' final rating. The Outlook on the IDR is Stable.
The rating actions follow the execution of the exchange offer and consent solicitations launched by FQM on 28 January 2014. With the early settlement of the exchange offer on 12 February 2014, the potential liquidity risk associated with the notice of default served by some of FQM (Akubra) Inc's (Akubra, formerly Inmet) bondholders has disappeared. The group's capital structure has also been simplified and the potential subordination risk has reduced with all bonds now ranking pari passu at the holding company (FQM) level.
The resolution of the RWN assumes that the USD2.5bn revolving credit facility (RCF) maturing in June 2014 will be successfully refinanced with a five-year USD2.5bn term loan and RCF at FQM's level for which a mandate letter was signed on 24 January. We also assume that the USD1bn secured facility to Kansanshi will be replaced with a USD350m unsecured credit line.
The assignment of the final rating on the exchange notes follows the receipt of documents conforming to information already received and is in line with the expected ratings assigned on 30 January 2014.
KEY RATING DRIVERS
Simplified Capital Structure Continuación...