January 22, 2021

S&P rates Prisa as a junk bond and very vulnerable to the current situation



Madrid, Jan 7 (EFE) .- The S&P Global agency this Thursday finally classified Prisa’s debt as a result of its restructuring as “very vulnerable and dependent on the current situation”, the translation more adjusted to the note “CCC +” used in its slang, one more category within the junk bond.

In addition, S&P Global’s outlook on Prisa’s debt is negative, which opens the door for a rating downgrade in the near future, according to the notification sent by the communication group to the National Market Commission for Securities (CNMV).

On December 2, the Prisa group informed the CNMV that it had signed with all the creditors involved the agreement agreed in October to refinance debt for 1,148 million euros, which will allow it to reduce that figure by 30% and postpone the maturity until 2025, as well as the sale of Santillana Spain.

The sale of Santillana to the Finnish company Sanoma, closed on December 31 for 465 million euros, will have a positive impact on Prisa’s accounts of 360 million, somewhat below the 385 million initially calculated.

The group has aroused the interest of different investors in recent times and this week Vocento explained to the CNMV that its Board of Directors met on December 29 to analyze the possible purchase of Prisa’s media.

To do this, Vocento established an “informal communication” with Prisa, and after verifying that the owner of El País was not available to initiate conversations in this regard, he abandoned the project without transferring any offer.

Prisa, for its part, said that “it has not requested any offer for its media assets” and “has not started any talks in this regard.”

In November, the Board of Directors of Prisa unanimously rejected another offer, led by businessman Blas Herrero, to buy all of its media business, both in Spain and Latin America, among which are El País, Cinco Días or As and stations such as Cadena Ser, Los 40, Caracol Radio or W Radio, for about 200 million euros.

In mid-December, the Prisa Shareholders’ Meeting agreed to the removal of Javier Monzón as chairman of the group, after the reference shareholder, Amber Capital, requested it. Proprietary Director Joseph Oughourlian now serves as Acting Chairman.

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