Struggling Abengoa appoints Lazard
By Christopher Spink and Sandrine Bradley
LONDON, Sept 4 (IFR) - Abengoa has appointed Lazard to help advise on options in its hunt for fresh investors, according to sources with knowledge of the matter.
The Spanish renewable energy producer is attempting to raise 650m via a rights issue, which seems ambitious considering its market capitalisation is just 876m.
IFR reported on August 25 that Credit Agricole, HSBC and Santander had agreed to standby underwrite the issue, with Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Citigroup also considering whether to be involved.
However, a local media report on Thursday said the latter two banks as well as Societe Generale had decided against participating.
Instead, it appears that Lazard, which also has debt restructuring expertise, has been brought in to provide advice.
BAML and Citigroup are still in contact with Abengoa, but sources say they are reluctant to commit until the company provides further reassurance on additional funding plans. The company has also undertaken to sell assets, which could include part of US-listed Abengoa Yield, to raise 500m of additional funds.
Restructuring advisers have been approaching Abengoa's board offering to assist the company in its plans, according to one Madrid-based banker. The company has 5.7bn of debt in total.
Bonds from the troubled Spanish company went into freefall on Friday after Bloomberg reported that Lazard had been retained. Continuación...