Nine's lenders to seal the company's fate

By By David Blight | 15 October 2012

Nine Entertainment Co's warring lenders will reportedly meet tomorrow in a final attempt to work out a deal which will allow the company to stave off receivership and restructure its $3.2 billion debt.

The company's senior debt holders – led by Apollo Global Management and Oaktree Capital – will meet with mezzanine debt holders – spearheaded by Goldman Sachs.

It has been reported that Nine has said if the lenders do not come to an agreement by tomorrow, the company will be forced to go into administration.

Both lending parties have been at odds for several weeks regarding the company's debt load and how to restructure the business. The mezzanine debt holders were originally pushing for 30% equity in the company, while the senior lenders argued Goldman Sachs deserved nothing.

As the company edged closer to receivership, Nine executives Peter Bush and David Gyngell last week put an offer on the table which would give Goldman Sachs approximately 5%. While Goldman Sachs agreed to the deal, the senior lenders have continued to hold off on any agreement, instead providing a counter offer which would give Goldman Sachs 2% in equity.

Goldman Sachs and the senior lenders have both suggested they will not budge any further.

Nine's $2.3 billion in senior debt must be repaid by February.

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