ENERGY & OFFSHORE | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Noble bows out of paying for US$1.1b revolving credit facility

But it has now raised the support for its restructuring agreement to 55%.

Noble Group Limited (NGL) will not make the interest payment due 29 March 2018 for its US$1.1b unsecured revolving credit facility (RCF), it said in an announcement.

“In accordance with the restructuring support agreement (RSA), the Company will not make any future interest or principal payments due in respect of the RCF, which amounts will be addressed through the restructuring,” it said. It added that it has consulted extensively with the ad hoc group of its creditors.

Noble noted that the proposed restructuring requires the company to address all its debts in the manner set out in the RSA. This requires such amounts to be restructured in accordance with the terms of the proposed restructuring and not paid, “in order to preserve the company and its assets for the benefit of all stakeholders during the implementation of the proposed restructuring,” it said.

Meanwhile, in a separate update, Noble said ING Bank N.V., as existing trade finance provider and fronting bank, has received credit approval and has acceded to the RSA. This means acceptances from consenting creditors now represent an aggregate 55% of existing senior claims.

The company and the ad hoc group have also decided to extend the deadline for subscriptions to 11 April 2017.

Noble will also avail a new $600m 3-year committed Trade Finance Facility from ING Bank to support the operations of New Noble post-restructuring. “The group is also in active dialogue with third parties interested in extending additional trade finance and hedging facilities to Noble in the interim period prior to completion of the Restructuring. These facilities are expected to facilitate the transition of operations to ‘business as usual’ and allow Noble to take advantage of the significant commercial opportunities that lie ahead,” it added.

Noble chairman Paul Brough commented, “The securing of trade finance provides much needed stability and will now enable Will Randall and his dedicated team to operate unencumbered by the headwinds they have previously faced. We are actively negotiating additional facilities with other parties to enable the Company to return to a stronger financial footing and business as usual.” 

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