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HVB and ING and have closed syndication of a US$150mn secured pre-export facility for Russia’s largest nitrogen fertiliser producer, Eurochem Group. Around US$200mn in commitments were raised in the market, although the facility will not be increased. This transaction is the first syndicated loan extended to Eurochem and enables the company to stretch its loan maturity profile and to diversify its investor base from domestic to international banks.

The success of this facility, claim the arrangers, underlines the confidence of the international banking market in Eurochem and in the Russian market.
HVB and ING acted as mandated lead arrangers and joint bookrunners.
HVB also acted as facility agent and International Bank Moscow (IMB), an affiliate of HVB, as the passport bank. ING acted as documentation agent.
In addition to the oversubscription in syndication, the mandated lead arrangers are also pleased that the deal attracted a strong and internationally diversified bank syndicate: BCEN-Eurobank, BNP Paribas, Calyon, Commerzbank, Credit Suisse, Moscow Narodny Bank, Natexis Banques Populaires, Raiffeisenbank Austria.

The proceeds are to finance the export of fertiliser products, to refinance existing indebtedness and for general corporate purposes. The facility has a tenor of 24 months with an equal monthly amortisation profile after a six-month grace period.

Eurochem is Russia’s largest integrated nitrogen fertiliser producer and among the world’s largest players in the nitrogen and phosphate segments.
Total turnover for the Eurochem Group was US$966mn in 2003. In 2004 the Eurochem Group is expected to post revenue in excess of US$1.3bn.