Sri Lanka Telecom to seek $ 125 m from capital markets

Wednesday, 6 October 2010 23:12 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

Reuters: Sri Lanka Telecom, the Indian Ocean nation’s top fixed-line phone operator and one of the stock market’s blue chip firms, on Tuesday said it would seek $125 million from either bonds or a syndicated loan.

“We are looking at raising $125 million either through bonds or syndicated loans for our expansion plans, including the mobile network,” Chief Finance Officer Shiron Gooneratne told Reuters.

The Government’s success last week in selling a $ 1 billion, 10-year sovereign Eurobond priced at 6.25 percent has encouraged SLT, Gooneratne said.

“Considering the country’s recent international bond, we think there is a strong demand for the Sri Lankan companies as well. But we have not decided yet whether we should go for bonds or syndicated loans and the timing,” Gooneratne said.

Sri Lanka Telecom has a $ 734.3 million market capitalisation. It issued a $ 100 million, five-year bond issue in 2004 with a 6.9 per cent coupon rate and Gooneratne said the company redeemed the loan last year.

As of 30 June, 52.9 per cent of the company was owned by the Government, while around 45 per cent was owned by Global Telecommunication Holdings NV, the June quarter interim financial report showed. It posted a net profit of $ 6.8 million in the June quarter, more than double a year earlier.