PHI buys back notes in preparation for new offer

PHI Helicopters is nearing completion of a tender offer of an early buy-back of notes. These are those outstanding from a 2014 issue of $500 million and that are due for redemption in 2019.

Essentially, this is a balance sheet restructuring in preparation for a new $500 million offering maturing in 2023, plans for which were announced in June this year.

The offshore oil-and-gas helicopter operator has not yet entered into a definitive agreement for its proposed 2023 debt offering, opting first to buy-back the shares of its previous $500 million debt offering issued in 2014 and to fully repay and terminate its existing revolving credit facility which runs until on 7 March 2019.

The tender offer for the 2019 notes was announced on 18 June. PHI had received tenders and consents from holders of 89.12% of the principal amount of the 2019 notes on 29 June, the date on which tenders became irrevocable.

The company also proposed a consent solicitation for the 2019 notes that would see most of the restrictive covenants related to the 2019 senior notes removed in the event of a default. The solicitation is still awaiting approval from the SEC.

In order to pay for the remaining 10.88% of the 2019 notes, PHI will need to complete “one or more” debt financing transactions to have the funds available. PHI intends to do just this and is currently marketing a senior secured term loan to do so.

PHI expects to purchase the 2019 notes validly tendered on time. The withdrawal deadline has passed for the notes, closing at 5:00pm ET on 29 June, meaning stakeholders can no longer withdraw the notes on or before the expiration date of the offering.

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