MGM closes $500 mn revolving loan

MUMBAI: Ending its bankruptcy, Metro-Goldwyn Mayer (MGM) has closed a $500 million revolving credit facility.

The revolving credit facility replaces a term loan and a smaller revolving facility the studio received as part of a pre-packaged bankruptcy in which its lenders exchanged $4 billion in outstanding debt for equity valued at about $2 billion.

Announcing the Studio?s endeavour, MGM co-CEO and co-chairmen Gary Barber and Roger Birnbaum said, "A year ago MGM was in bankruptcy and to receive this oversubscribed facility just one year later is proof positive that through careful and efficient business decisions, we have earned the faith of the financial community."

The credit facility will be used to pay up debts and also to develop the film and TV businesses that will include films being made under a partnership with Sony Pictures Entertainment including 21 Jump Steet, the next James Bond movie Skyfall, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey and The Hobbit: There and Back Again (in partnership with Warrner Bros.) and GI Joe: Retaliation (with Paramount Pictures).

Other films in development include remakes of Robocop, Carrie, Poltergiest and Teen Wolf, along with Punk Farm and Vikings.

The restructuring of MGM was a long process that began in May 2009 when Moelis & Co, an investment bank, was hired to advice management. In August the same year, Stephen Cooper replaced CEO Harry Sloan who was said to be a turnaround expert.

MGM was having problems meeting $300 million in annual interest payments. Moelis & Co. had to work out the bankruptcy with more than 140 creditors. The closing of the deal will trigger a payment of over $9 million to Moelis.

The new loan was led by JP Morgan Chase, which reportedly put up $75 million of the new credit facility. The rest came from Deutsche Bank, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Royal Bank of Canada, SunTrust Bank, Wells Fargo, CIT Bank, Union Bank, City National Bank and OneWest Bank.

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