Demiroren’s debt revamp talks now cover USD 2bn


The owner of Demiroren Holding is in talks to restructure about USD 2bn in loans, sources familiar with the talks said, more than previously reported as the focus has expanded to debt used to finance its acquisitions of media, lottery and energy assets.

The sources, who requested anonymity, told Reuters the talks could expand further to cover even more debt, taking into account interest.

Demiroren Holding did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the restructuring talks.

Backed by the state-lender Ziraat Bank, Demiroren in 2018 paid USD 916m for Hurriyet newspaper, broadcaster CNN Turk and other assets from Dogan Holding.

Reuters has previously reported that Demiroren was in discussions to restructure up to USD 1.4bn in loans.

It is in talks with Ziraat Bank to restructure USD 800m, the amount of debt it took on to finance purchases in the media sector, three banking sources said.

Demiroren also has interests in real estate, energy, betting and the lottery business.

The rest of the debt – around USD 1.2bn to acquire lottery services and energy ventures – is being negotiated with eight or nine banks, including state lenders, the sources said.

One of the sources said the holding company “has difficulty making money from its core businesses and this makes the restructuring difficult.”

Among the restructuring options under consideration are extending terms, adding a balloon payment, a “hair cut,” or switching debt from USD to TRY, a second banking source said.

A balloon payment could possibly bring about an asset sale but “nothing is clear yet,” this person added.

Demiroren Group, established by 79-year old Erdogan Demiroren, is active in the energy, mining, manufacturing, tourism and real estate sectors. Demiroren’s older son Yildirim Demiroren is the former president of the Turkish Football Federation (TFF) and was the former chairman of Istanbul giants Besiktas.

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