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Minerva soothes investors with 750m refinancing deal

City A.M. Reporter
SHARES in indebted London office developer Minerva soared yesterday, after it said it had refinanced, extended or restructured loans totalling more than &pound;750m.<br /><br />After months of negotiations, Minerva&rsquo;s lenders have agreed revised terms on &pound;570m of loans secured on two City of London office developments at The Walbrook and St Botolphs.<br /><br />These include the deferral of loan to value covenants and the removal of interest guarantees. In return, Minerva has pledged additional security, incorporated leasing targets and agreed an enhanced exit fee to its banks.<br /><br />Minerva shares have slumped 65 per cent in the past 12 months as investors feared it could be forced into fire-sales to remedy its refinancing needs. Minerva has also refinanced &pound;188m of debt in six other existing facilities totalling &pound;222m. It has reduced the size of total commitment in exchange for extensions to the previous maturities of between one and three years.<br /><br />As a result of the amendments, Minerva has no scheduled loan maturities for the next two years. Its shares closed up 25 per cent at 40.49p.