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Reliance Jio ties up with lenders for $1.5 bn loan facility

RJio would utilise the latest credit arrangements to re-finance debt tied up by it in 2010. The new loan facilities are guaranteed by RIL.

twitter-logoPTI | November 17, 2014 | Updated 21:11 IST
RIL chairman Mukesh Ambani
RIL chairman Mukesh Ambani

Telecom operator Reliance Jio Infocomm has arranged credit facilities worth $1.5 billion with lenders, including Bank of America and Barclays, to refinance existing loans.

Mukesh Ambani-led RJio would utilise the latest credit arrangements to re-finance debt tied up by it in 2010. The new loan facilities are guaranteed by its parent, Reliance Industries Limited (RIL).

In a statement on Monday, the company said that new credit facility "comprises $1 billion facility I, which has a total maturity of 5.5 years and the $0.5 billion facility II, which has a total maturity of 7 years."

This represents the longest average maturity for an unsecured syndicated loan of similar size in Asia this year, it added.

The facility was fully underwritten by an initial group of 15 core relationship banks that comprise the Mandated Lead Arrangers and Bookrunners (MLABs).

"The deal witnessed significant over subscription before it was launched into syndication and two banks joined in as MLAs. The overall bank group saw participation from banks all over the world, including North America, Europe, Australia, Asia and the Middle East. This term loan syndication saw a total of 26 banks participate in the facility," the statement said.

Middle Eastern, regional Taiwanese and Japanese banks strongly participated in providing facility, the statement said.

"Facility saw tremendous response in Syndication and raised over $400 million. In compliance with RBI guidelines, this facility saw participation from only International banks," the statement added.

The 15 MLABs for the facility include Australia and New Zealand Banking Group Limited, Bank of America N.A., Barclays Bank PLC, BNP Paribas, Singapore Branch, The Bank of Nova Scotia Asia Limited, The Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd and Citigroup Global Markets Singapore Pte. Ltd.

The 2 MLAs which came in before syndication are National Bank of Abu Dhabi P.J.S.C. and United Overseas Bank Limited.

The banks which joined in syndication include Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, Societe Generale SA, Sumitomo Mitsui Trust Bank, Limited, Singapore Branch, Land Bank of Taiwan, Singapore Branch and Mega International Commercial Bank Co., Ltd., Offshore Banking Branch.

Reliance Industries has already announced that it will launch commercial 4G telecom service of RJio in 2015 entailing investment of Rs 70,000 crore.

RJio will initially cover about 5,000 towns and cities accounting for over 90 per cent of urban India, as well as over 215,000 villages in India and the target is to expand this to over 600,000 villages.

RJio is the only company which holds pan-India broadband wireless access spectrum that can be used for 4G services.

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