Brazil’s Oi starts $14.3 billion bond restructuring talks

A woman stands next to the logo of Brazil’s largest fixed-line telecoms group Oi, inside a shop in Sao Paulo October 2, 2013.
REUTERS/NACHO DOCE

Oi SA on Monday formally started talks to restructure $14.3 billion of bonds, pitting some of the world’s biggest investors against each other as Brazil’s most-indebted phone carrier fights for its survival.

In a securities filing, Oi said a group of bondholders that have Moelis & Co as their advisor signed a non-disclosure agreement to join talks. Reuters, citing sources, said the group of over 25 investment firms including BlackRock Inc, Citadel LLC and Pacific Investment Management Co, could sign the accord as early as Monday.

The decision to begin talks with the Moelis-advised group leaves unclear how, or whether, Oi will negotiate with other creditors such as hedge funds that have bought credit default swaps linked to Oi’s bonds. The carrier wants to negotiate with bondholders who “care about the company’s future,” one of those sources told Reuters.

At stake is the fate of Oi, the byproduct of a state-sponsored merger eight years ago and the only Brazilian carrier controlled by domestic capital. Shareholders see a restructuring facilitating a potential takeover of Oi, which they say could help narrow the gap with rivals controlled by Spain’s Telefónica SA and Mexican billionaire Carlos Slim’s América Móvil SAB

Read the full article on Reuters.

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