Monday, July 23, 2007

A "Financing Snag" for GM's Allison

by Bill McBride on 7/23/2007 08:18:00 PM

From the WSJ: GM's Allison Hits a Financing Snag

Wall Street firms postponed a sale of $3.1 billion in loans that would pay for the leveraged buyout of General Motor Corp.'s Allison Transmission unit ...

The snag reflects difficult conditions in the market for risky corporate debt and raises questions over the prospects of other buyout-related debt financings that need to be completed this summer ...

GM ... agreed to sell Allison Transmission ... to private equity firms Carlyle Group LP and Onex Corp. for $5.6 billion. ...

Underwriters, including Citigroup, Lehman Brothers and Merrill Lynch, were planning to sell, or syndicate, $3.1 billion of the loans to investors. ...

The buyout is still on track to be completed in the third quarter. If the debt hasn't been distributed by then, the deal will be financed directly by the underwriters ...
Another possible "pier" loan for the underwriters.

Note: A bridge loan is short term financing provided by the underwriters until they can syndicate the debt. If the underwriters can't syndicate the debt, and they have to keep the loan (the short term financing becomes long term financing), it's frequently called a "pier loan"; i.e. a bridge to nowhere.