Global law firm White & Case LLP has advised Novasep, a leading supplier of manufacturing solutions to the life sciences industry, in relation to its financial restructuring.
Novasep employs approximately 1, 200 people and has six manufacturing plants in France, Germany and the Bahamas; two biopharmaceutical production sites in Belgium; R&D and equipment manufacturing facilities in the USA, China and France, and an office in Japan.
Today Novasep completed its restructuring transaction pursuant to the consensual restructuring agreement that was signed on 14 December 2011 between Novasep, its main bondholders, its financial shareholders and the Fonds Stratégique d'Investissement ("FSI"), the French strategic investment fund.
Under the terms of the restructuring, the existing high yield bond indebtedness was exchanged for equity securities and new high yield bonds, thereby enabling a significant reduction of the debt of the group from approximately €415 million to €150 million, and of its cash interest expenses from approximately €40 million to €12 million per year. Bondholders representing over 99% of the total principal amount of the existing bonds participated in the exchange. In addition, new investments have been provided by the FSI in the amount of €30 million, and by Azulis, one of Novasep's financial shareholders, in the amount of €3 million.
"This transaction is a first of its kind in France, where the restructuring is made by converting a high yield bond debt into capital shares and where the bondholder investment funds become the majority shareholders of a group," said Philippe Métais, one of the partners at White & Case in charge of the transaction.
"The particular complexity of this transaction was due to the number of parties involved, both on the debt and equity side, as well as to the legal and tax constraints linked to the international nature of the Novasep group," said François Leloup, another partner on the White & Case transaction team.
In Paris, the White & Case team was led by partners Philippe Métais and François Leloup, assisted by associates Camille Note, Noémie Baroux, Aurélie Martigne, Christel Alberti, Samir Berlat, Thierry Pujol d'Andrebo and Stanislas Chenu. In London, the team was led by partner Colin Chang, assisted by associates James Greene and Monica Holden. In Germany, partners Frank Evers and Florian Degenhardt were assisted by associates Matthias Grigoleit and John-Patrick Bischoff, and in Brussels, partner Thierry Bosly was assisted by associates Andries De Smet and Ferdinand Brughmans.
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