Silknet, one of the largest players in the Georgian communications sector, will place $300 million worth of bonds on the stock exchange on January 31. According to Silknet, the interest rate on the bonds is 8.375% and its holders will receive the coupon twice a year, while the maturity of the 5-year eurobonds will expire in 2027.
According to TBC Capital, the 8.375% interest rate makes Silknet’s new eurobonds competitive at the regional level. For example, Vodafone Ukraine and Turk Telekom traded in the range of 8.08% -9.27% as of January 19, 2021.
The international rating company Moody’s has changed its negative rating outlook for “Silknet” to stable, based on the company’s improved performance and liquidity.
According to the international rating agency Fitch, the credit rating of the new bond is likely to be “B”. “The company plans to use the net proceeds of the issuance of the bond to repay its current $200 million bonds, which is due in 2024; Also, repay GEL-denominated bonds that expire in 2022. The funds raised will also be spent on shareholders and key corporate goals,” – the Fitch website said.
“Silknet” attracted $200 million in international bonds for the first time in March 2019. The book-runners and joint lead managers for the offering are J.P. Morgan Securities plc and UBS AG London Branch, with TBC Capital LLC also acting as joint lead manager.
Silknet is the second-largest telecommunications company in the country and is part of the investment group „Silk Road Group“. As of September 2021, the company serves 1.72 million mobile and 197,000 fixed subscribers in Georgia. The company’s internet service is used by 293,000 subscribers, while 226,000 subscribers use the TV service. The company received $306.4 million in revenue for the first 9 months of 2021. This amount is 8% higher than the amount for the same period of last year.