Signage of Airtel Ltd. seen at one of its outlet in Bengaluru, India. (Photographer: Anirudh Saligrama / BloombergQuint)

Bharti Airtel International Begins Cash Purchase Of $1.5 Billion Bonds To Reduce Debt

Bharti Airtel Ltd. on Saturday said that its subsidiary Bharti Airtel International (Netherlands) BV would pre-pay debt worth $1.5 billion, using the proceeds it got from six global entities investing in its Africa unit.

Bharti Airtel International (Netherlands) commenced cash purchase of $1.5 billion, 5.125 percent guaranteed senior notes which were due in 2023, Bharti Airtel said in a regulatory filing.

This offer, it said, has been made with a view to “proactively manage its capital structure, reduce gross debt and leverage by acquiring the Notes funded out of equity proceeds and also provide liquidity to Noteholders at a premium to the market.”

Bharti Airtel group continues to deleverage and pursue its strategies towards that end, it added.

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In line with this, it has been actively exploring various equity driven initiatives, including those previously announced regarding its Africa business, so as to proactively manage its balance sheet and capital structure to align them to the group’s core conservative philosophy.
Bharti Airtel Statement

Airtel Africa Ltd., a U.K. incorporated subsidiary of Bharti Airtel Ltd., recently made a successful primary equity issuance of $1.25 billion to six leading global investors, including Warburg Pincus, Temasek, Singtel, SoftBank Group and others.

“The proceeds of this equity issuance are intended to be used to reduce Airtel Africa's existing debt of approximately $5 billion on the date of the announcement,” it said.

The proceeds of this equity issuance are now fully realised and available as cash. The company also carries organic cash on its balance sheet.

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