Debt-laden Ezion lays out refinancing proposals for bondholders

Ezion, which owns a fleet of liftboats, also said it had met with several interested potential investors, including funds and strategic investors.
Ezion, which owns a fleet of liftboats, also said it had met with several interested potential investors, including funds and strategic investors.PHOTO: EZION HOLDINGS

SINGAPORE (REUTERS) - Debt-laden Ezion Holdings said it was seeking support from investors for its proposals to cut coupon rates and extend the maturity of its bonds as part of its efforts to refinance liabilities of US$2 billion amid an industry downturn.

Singapore's offshore and marine industry has been hit by low oil prices, weak charter rates and delays to projects, forcing many firms to restructure debt and cut costs.

Ezion, has five series of notes maturing from 2019 to 2021 with a principal amount of S$425 million and S$150 million of perpetual bonds.

It is looking to slash coupon rates across the issues to 0.25 per cent, but said the proposals would allow the principal to be redeemed in full, according to Ezion's presentation filed with the stock exchange on Tuesday (Oct 3), a day after after its second meeting with bondholders.

Its shares have been suspended since August as it continues talks with stakeholders such as bank lenders and creditors about its financing and capitalisation structure.

Ezion, which owns a fleet of liftboats, also said it had met with several interested potential investors, including funds and strategic investors.

"A strategic investor is keen to work with the company but would like to see the refinancing of lenders and MTN (medium-term notes) completed first," it said.

Ezion said it was awaiting final approval from its lenders for a six-year refinancing plan, which was dependant on bondholders agreeing to its proposals for the notes.