Global network services provider Savvis Communications Corp.
has signed an agreement for equity funding of approximately $158 million which will be used to reduce the Herndon, Va.-based company’s debt and other liabilities by approximately $214 million and to provide additional working capital to increase the company’s customer base.
Welsh, Carson, Anderson & Stowe will hold approximately 56 percent of Savvis’ voting stock upon effectiveness of a written consent, which is expected in the second quarter of this year. Under the terms of the transaction, the company may raise an additional $45 million of preferred stock at substantially the same terms and conversion price.
Savvis will issue approximately $158 million of 11.5 percent convertible preferred stock in exchange for a combination of cash and debt. The transaction will reduce Savvis’ debt by 64 percent to approximately $93 million and will result in an extraordinary gain of approximately $65 million in the first quarter of this year.
The preferred stock will be convertible initially into approximately 211 million shares of Savvis common stock at a conversion price of 75 cents per share and will have voting rights that allow the holders to vote with the common on an as-if-converted basis. Dividends will be paid quarterly in the form of additional convertible preferred stock.
“SAVVIS’ growing sales and strong operating performance are what have attracted investor interest,” said Rob McCormick, chairman and chief executive officer of Savvis. “Bucking the trend in our industry, we will have a robust balance sheet when this transaction is completed, with only a modest amount of remaining debt and funds to ramp up sales of our IP VPN, managed hosting and Internet services. Unlike many of our competitors, Savvis is in strong financial health, and, from this position of strength, we are redoubling our commitment to drive revenue growth and continued margin improvement in 2002.”
Savvis also announced that it has reached agreement with GE Capital Vendor Financial Services to amend approximately $57 million of capital lease obligations. The amended lease provides for repayment at the end of the fifth year and 12 percent interest payable in cash or in kind, at Savvis’ option, for the first three years.
The company has also agreed to issue five-year warrants to certain of its debt holders to acquire approximately 16 million shares of common stock at 75 cents per share.