INM bond repayment deadline pushed back for fifth time

Independent News and Media has extended the standstill agreement with its principal bondholders, it announced on Friday.

A bond of €200m (£185m) was due to be repaid on 25 September, but the deadline has been pushed back to 30 October. The original deadline was May 18, making this the fifth extension in as many months.

The O’Reilly family and Denis O’Brien, the largest and second-largest shareholders in INM respectively, have been embattled over their attempts to rescue the ailing company.

INM has offered a restructuring deal that involves a debt-for-equity swap – leaving bondholders with a 45% stake in the business – a rights issue to raise cash and the disposal of assets including the group’s South African advertising business, INM Outdoor.

O’Brien proposes paying bondholders part of the €200m debt back immediately, and swapping the remainder for equity.

He is against the sale of INM Outdoor, and wants the Independent and the Independent on Sunday to be sold or closed with immediate effect.

Following a request from O’Brien for a vote on a number of proposals, INM has scheduled an extraordinary general meeting for 3 November, however it has shunned seven of the nine resolutions requested by O’Brien.

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