Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ (BTMU), Bayerische Landesbank, HSBC (bookrunner), ING Wholesale Banking (bookrunner, facility and documentation agent), RZB Group (bookrunner), Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation Europe (SMBCE) as underwriters and mandated lead arrangers have signed lenders into a US$1.33bn loan for Russia’s OJSC Mobile Telesystems (MTS).

Following successful senior syndication with Credit Suisse International and BNP Paribas that joined as underwriters and MLAs and ABN Amro and WestLB as MLAs, 15 additional lenders have participated in general syndication.

The transaction was oversubscribed raising US$1.5bn, but not increased.

The facility was fully underwritten and consists of a US$630nn three-year tranche with a bullet maturity, and a US$700nn five-year amortising tranche. The purpose of the facility is refinancing of the existing indebtedness, as well as general corporate purposes, including acquisitions.

The three-year tranche pays a margin of Libor + 0.80% per year; the five-year amortising tranche pays Libor + 1% per year in years one-to-three, and Libor + 1.15% per year in years four-to-five.

Lenders were offered participation levels of US$50mn, US$30mn, US$20mn and US$10mn as lead arranger (70bp), arranger (55bp), co-arranger (45bp) and senior lead manager (35bp) respectively.

MTS is the largest mobile operator in both Russia and Ukraine, in terms of net revenues and subscribers. The company employs technology based primarily on the GSM platform.