£550m Liberty International bank facility competitive

Posted On Saturday, 01 January 2000 03:01 Published by Commercial Property News
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Strategy of nonrecourse funding continued

Donald GordonUK PROPERTY group Liberty International (Libint), which has a secondary listing on the JSE Securities Exchange, has secured a 10-year £550m nonrecourse banking facility on the Lakeside Shopping Centre in Thurrock, UK.

The major out-of-town regional shopping centre is owned by Libint's subsidiary, Capital Shopping Centres (CSC). The facility has been underwritten by Eurohypo London Branch and HSBC Bank. Eurohypo London Branch has been appointed as the Agent Bank.

The facility consists of a £450m term loan and a £100m revolving loan, providing medium-term funds for the refinancing of Lakeside and for the group's working capital requirements.

Libint said the interest rate margin was competitive, and the covenants allowed for full financial flexibility in CSC continuing to actively manage this asset.

Lakeside Shopping Centre, which opened in October 1990, is one of the most successful shopping centres in the UK, with a catchment population of more than 10-million people and about 25-million customer visits a year. Lakeside has an established 10-year trading history of substantial sales and rental growth.

Commenting on the loan facility, Libint chairman Donald Gordon said: 'We are pleased to strengthen our close relationships with Eurohypo and HSBC, the underwriters of this substantial facility. The transaction continues the group's strategy of financing our major shopping-centre assets on a nonrecourse basis, while retaining full financial and operational flexibility to continue our active management and to deliver added value in the future.

'This has been a further hallmark of CSC's unique focused and asset-specific approach as the leader in the development, ownership and management of regional shopping centres in the United Kingdom,' said Gordon.

'This financing programme, which has raised almost £1,5bn, substantially completes our long-term target to enable Liberty International to fulfil its development and investment strategy for the medium term.'

Max Sinclair, director of Eurohypo's London branch, said: 'Having previously acted as the arranger for the highly successful £172,5m 20-year loan secured on The Harlequin, Watford, and the £730m nonrecourse 15-year facility secured on Braehead, Glasgow and MetroCentre and Gateshead, Eurohypo are delighted to be chosen again in this capacity for Lakeside. We expect the syndication of this facility to be successfully completed in the near future.'

HSBC said it was pleased to be associated with the transaction, given its excellent relationship with CSC and Liberty International for years. I-Net Bridge.

Last modified on Saturday, 25 May 2013 02:27

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