Sabic completes DPC acquisition, financing moves forward

05 July 2002

Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (Sabic) formally completed its acquisition of DSM Petrochemicals (DPC) from DSM in two signing ceremonies in the Netherlands and Germany on 1 July and 2 July respectively, giving the company its first foothold in the European market.

'With the combined polyolefin assets of DSM Petrochemicals and Sabic, we will establish the new company - Sabic EuroPetrochemicals- as a highly competitive participant in the European polymers market,' said Mohammed al-Mady at the signing ceremony in Geleen, the Netherlands.

Frans Noteborn has been appointed chairman of Sabic EuroPetrochemicals' managing board and Boy Litjens and Jan Hessel Kruit have been made board members.

The Eur 2,353 million ($2,235 million) financing package for the transaction has been launched to sub-underwriters, and this phase is expected to close by mid July. 'They made the crucial decision to allow banks to bid for particular tranches of the sub-underwriting, rather than forcing them to bid on a pro rata basis,' says a banker involved in the transaction. 'This will allow more banks to get involved.' It is expected that the lead arranging group is aiming to get commitments totalling about Eur 1,000 million ($950 million) at the sub-underwriting level from about 10 financial institutions.

'There is some debate over when the deal will be launched to general syndication. The regional banks are keen to bring this to market as soon as possible,' says the banker. 'But with the summer recess coming, there are some who think it might be better to wait until September. My guess is this will be launched sooner rather than later.'

The following companies make up the lead arranging group for the multi-tranche financing: JP Morgan; HSBC Investment Bankwith Saudi British Bank; Credit Agricole Indosuez with Al-Bank Al-Saudi Al-Fransi; Saudi American Bank; Arab National Bankwith Arab Bank; Arab Petroleum Investments Corporation; Gulf International Bank; and Arab Banking Corporation(MEED 31:5:02).

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