Wind debt deal delayed

31 Aug 2005

The sale of EUR9.3 billion (USD11.4 billion) of debt to finance the Orascom Telecom-led Weather Investments’ buyout of Italian telco Wind has hit unexpected obstacle, according to the Financial Times. The sheer size of the debt package is causing concern amongst bankers, with a number of investors thought to be holding back in hope that they can buy the debt cheaper in the after-market. Despite the snag, those arranging the deal insist it will be completed soon. The long-running saga looked to be finally over when the sale of a 62.75% stake in Wind by power company Enel was completed earlier this month. The Weather Investments consortium paid USD3.7 billion in cash for the stake and Enel has the option to sell the remaining 37.25% of the telco for USD412 million in the first half of 2006. Other investors in Weather include French group IPE and US tycoon Wilbur Ross.

Italy, WINDTRE (incl. Wind and 3 Italia)