Global to delay bond repayment
Kuwait, June 7, 2012
Kuwait's Global Investment House secured approval from bondholders to delay the repayment of bonds worth 95 million dinars ($338.9 million) to December from June, a regulatory filing from the company said.
The assent was granted at a meeting on Thursday in Kuwait of the holders of bonds worth 50 million dinars and 45 million, the statement to the London Stock Exchange said.
Global, which counts the governments of Kuwait and Dubai as major shareholders, is in the midst of its second debt restructuring in three years, having asked bank creditors in September to suspend payments on the $1.7 billion plan agreed in 2009.
The deferral will give Global further time for a new debt plan to be finalised, with terms expected to be circulated shortly, the statement said. An agreement should be in place by the time the waiver period expires, it added.
Sources told Reuters earlier this week that Global had already received verbal approval from holders and Thursday's meeting would rubber-stamp the move.
It is the second time holders of the 45 million dinars paper have agreed an extension, having initially pushed out repayment to June from April. Like other Kuwaiti investment houses, the global financial crisis in 2008 hit Global's portfolio hard.
Sources said in January Global had laid off 17 percent of its staff, or 60 employees out of 350, across the Gulf region as part of cost-cutting measures.
Shares in Global have not traded on the Kuwait Stock Exchange since December, after the bourse suspended the stock for the company's accumulated losses which exceeded 75 percent of its capital.-Reuters