O'Reilly set to give creditors control of IN&M

Independent News and Media’s major shareholder is set to give up half his shares to the company’s creditors as part of a rescue deal, according to The Times.

Dan Sabbagh reports that IN&M’s various lending banks are days away from signing up to a deal under which they will extend Euros1.3bn of loans until at least 2014.

The deal would see Sir Anthony O’Reilly halve his stake in the business to around 15 per cent – The Times reports.

Bondholders in IN&M are owed Euros 200m and apparently the new deal would give them cash and shares amounting to half the reconstructed company.

IN&M’s second biggest shareholder Denis O’Brien, who owns 26 per cent of the company, is opposing the deal. He told The Times: “There needs to be clarity on what is going to be left for shareholders once a deal is reached with banks and bondholders.”

O’Brien has long signalled his opposition to IN&M supporting the loss-making Independent and Independent on Sunday. IN&M’s other UK titles include the Belfast Telegraph.

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