Croatia-based Fortenova Group has invited potential investors to engage in discussion over the purchase of the group’s food, retail and agriculture businesses in the former Yugoslavia region.
The sales process of Fortenova Group MidCo., a Dutch holding company that owns 100% of Fortenova Grupa d.d., will be led by global investment firm Lazard, and is to be completed by the end of September 2023.
As sanctioned co-owners, Sberbank and VTBE have a 49.9% shareholding in Fortenova Group. This complicates business operations, negatively affects company value and makes it impossible to reach a sustainable and efficient capital structure, the company noted.
The group expects that the refinancing of €1.05 billion notes will soon be solved by extending the current notes for a period not longer than the end of 2024.
A Non-Binding Offer
The group received a non-binding offer that is likely to be accepted to bridge the time period needed to resolve the issue with sanctioned and other non-eligible equity holders.
Should the equity structure remain unchanged, any subsequent refinancing under such terms would only diminish the company’s value for all stakeholders.
If the sale should go through, any payments made would first be used to settle the €78 million outstanding debt to Agrokor suppliers.
At the end of the process the Fortenova Group would no longer have sanctioned participants in its capital structure, inherited from the settlement process of Agrokor’s creditors, thus securing a favourable, long-term, sustainable new capital structure.
Fortenova Group is one of the leading retailers in Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia and Montenegro with its banners Konzum, Idea, Mercator, and Roda.
It is also involved in the production of beverages, oil, meat, among others, offering a portfolio of over 100 brands.
Fortenova Group says it is operationally stable, with 2022 unaudited results showing net revenue of over €5.2 billion, adjusted EBITDA of over €300 million, net debt of €1.1 billion, a net debt/adjusted EBITDA ratio of 3.5x and over €280 million in liquidity.
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