Menu

Covenants and negative pledges relating to outstanding positions at December 31, 2015

08/04/2016 - 04:00 PM

- + Text size
Print

The bonds issued by the Telecom Italia Group do not contain financial covenants (e.g. ratios such as Debt/ EBITDA, EBITDA/ Interest, etc.) or clauses that would force the early redemption of the bonds in relation to events other than the insolvency of the Telecom Italia Group. Furthermore, the repayment of the bonds and the payment of interest are not covered by specific guarantees nor are there commitments provided relative to the assumption of future guarantees, except for the full and unconditional guarantees provided by Telecom Italia S.p.A. for the bonds issued by Telecom Italia Finance S.A. and Telecom Italia Capital S.A.. Since these bonds have been placed principally with institutional investors in major world capital markets (Euromarket and the U.S.A.), the terms which regulate the bonds are in line with market practice for similar transactions effected on these same markets. Consequently, for example, there are commitments not to use the company's assets as collateral for loans ("negative pledges").


With regard to the loans taken out by Telecom Italia S.p.A. ("Telecom Italia") with the European Investment Bank ("EIB"), at December 31, 2015, the nominal amount of outstanding loans amounted to 2,550 million euros, of which 1,100 million euros at direct risk and 1,450 million euros secured. EIB loans not secured by bank guarantees for a nominal amount equal to 1,100 million euros need to apply the following covenants:

  • in the event the company becomes the target of a merger, demerger or contribution of a business segment outside the Group, or sells, disposes or transfers assets or business segments (except in certain cases, expressly provided for), it shall immediately inform the EIB which shall have the right to ask for guarantees to be provided or changes to be made to the loan contract, or, only for certain loan contracts, the EIB shall have the option to demand the immediate repayment of the loan (should the merger, demerger or contribution of a business segment outside the Group compromise the Project execution or cause a prejudice to EIB in its capacity as creditor);
  • with the 500 million euro loan, signed on December 14, 2015, Telecom Italia undertook to ensure that, for the entire duration of the loan, the total financial debt of the Group companies other than Telecom Italia S.p.A. – except for the cases when that debt is fully and irrevocably secured by Telecom Italia S.p.A. – is lower than 35% (thirty-five percent) of the Group's total financial debt.

EIB loans secured by banks or entities approved by the EIB for a total nominal amount of 1,450 million euros, and direct risk loans, respectively for 300 million euros, signed on July 30, 2014 and 500 million euros, signed on December 14, 2015, must apply the following covenants:

... Covers a total of 1,650 million euros of loans, under which, in the event Telecom Italia commits to uphold financial covenants in other loan contracts (and even more restrictive clauses for 2014 and 2015 direct risk loans, including, for instance, cross default clauses and commitments restricting the sale of goods) that are not present in or are stricter than those granted to the EIB, the EIB will have the right – if, in its reasonable opinion, it considers that such changes may have a negative impact on Telecom Italia's financial capacity – to request the provision of guarantees or the modification of the loan contract in order to establish an equivalent provision in favor of the EIB;

 

... Covers a total of 1,350 million euros of loans, under which, in the event of the disposal of the entire fixed network or of a substantial part (in any case more than half in quantitative terms) to third parties or in the event of disposal of the controlling interest in the company in which the network or a substantial part of it has previously been transferred, Telecom Italia must immediately inform EIB, which shall have the option of requiring the establishment of guarantees or amendment of the loan contract or an alternative solution.

The loan agreements of Telecom Italia S.p.A. do not contain financial covenants (e.g. ratios such as Debt/EBITDA, EBITDA/Interests, etc.) which would oblige the Company to repay the outstanding loan if the covenants are not observed.

The loan agreements contain the usual other types of covenants, including the commitment not to use the Company’s assets as collateral for loans (negative pledges), the commitment not to change the business purpose or sell the assets of the Company unless specific conditions exist (e.g. the sale takes place at fair market value). Covenants with basically the same content are also found in the export credit loan agreement.

In the Loan Agreements and the Bonds, Telecom Italia is required to provide notification of change of control. Identification of the occurrence of a change of control and the applicable consequences – including the establishment of guarantees or the early repayment of the amount paid and the cancellation of commitment in the absence of agreements to the contrary – are specifically covered in the individual agreements. In addition, the outstanding loans generally contain a commitment by Telecom Italia, whose breach is an Event of Default, not to implement mergers, demergers or transfer of business, involving entities outside the Group. Such Event of Default may entail, upon request of the Lender, the early redemption of the drawn amounts and/or the annulment of the undrawn commitment amounts. In the documentation of the loans granted to certain companies of the TIM Brasil group, the companies must generally respect certain financial ratios (e.g. capitalization ratios, ratios for servicing debt and debt ratios) as well as the usual other covenants, under pain of a request for the early repayment of the loan.

Finally, as of December 31, 2015, no covenant, negative pledge clause or other clause relating to the above-described debt position, has in any way been breached or violated.