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Supply Chain

Sugar Group Cristal Union Secures €1bn Refinancing

France's second largest sugar and ethanol maker Cristal Union has announced a €1.0 billion refinancing agreement, which it said will give it some financial flexibility for its future projects.

The deal, signed on Tuesday, included €950 million under syndicated loans, €30 million in Impact bonds (IBs) issued by Cristal Union and 30 million in equity loans by French agri-food investment group Unigrains, it said.

The cooperative group is thereby anticipating its refinancing by one year and strengthening its liquidity, Cristal Union chief executive Xavier Astolfi told Reuters.

'Margin For Maneouvere'

"It will give the group some margin for manoeuvre. Some of this package could be used to finance future projects," Astolfi, who was appointed to his new role earlier this month, said.

The banks involved in the deal were Credit Agricole, BNP Paribas, Bred, Societe Generale, Credit Industriel et Commercial (CIC), Banque Europeenne du Credit Mutuel (BECM), Commerzbank, Landesbank Saar and UniCredit.

The refinancing is linked to environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria including the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions, lower water consumption and organic farming, Cristal Union said in a statement.

Management Appointments

Earlier this month, Cristal Union announced three new appointments to its management committee, which includes the appointment of Astolfi to the top role, as well as Stanislas Bouchard being installed as deputy general manager, and Vanina Paolaggi as secretary general.

The group reported a turnover of €1.7 billion in 2021.

France's biggest sugar maker, Tereos, raised €350 million in 5-year senior unsecured notes earlier this month, which it said would be used to repay existing debt.

News by Reuters, edited by ESM. For more Supply Chain news, click here. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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