Deal for Endemol as lenders approve €2.8bn debt-for-equity restructuring

THE TV production company behind Big Brother and Deal or No Deal yesterday announced “an important milestone” as its lenders agreed to overlook millions of euros of debt in exchange for equity.

Endemol received more than the required two thirds support from its creditors – including Barclays, RBS, Apollo and Centrebridge – who will hold stakes in the company in return for cutting the €2.8bn debt to €500m.

The lenders could also gain seats on Endemol’s board, while the current shareholders will see their stake cut by more than half.

The Dutch company has struggled to meet interest payment deadlines since its €2.6bn buyout by Goldman Sachs, Mediaset and Cyrte in 2007.

Endemol global president Marco Bassetti and chief financial officer Just Spee said, “A solution that puts Endemol on a strong financial footing for the future is now imminent.

“Without the constraints of an onerous capital structure, we will be able to pursue exciting growth initiatives.”

Time Warner placed an unsuccessful bid to buy the debt-ridden company for €1bn last December.