Premier bondholders back refinancing

North Sea firm Premier Oil said today that it had passed the threshold needed to amend the terms of convertible bonds in the company.

Premier said the holders of more than 75% of its $245million convertible bonds have entered into a “lock up” agreement.

The agreement commits them to voting in favour of the firm’s proposed refinancing.

“This is a sufficient majority to pass the required resolution to implement the amended terms of the convertible bonds”, a spokesperson for Premier said.

Last month, Premier said the last of its so-called “Schuldschein” loan holders had committed to voting in favour of the restructuring of its £2.3billion debt pile.

Schuldschein refers to a form of privately placed, unlisted and unregistered debt that is commonplace among German investors.

The announcement brought the firm a step closer to completing its refinancing which has been in process for almost a year.

The firm previously said the deal would be clear of all hurdles by the end of May.

Its £1.2billion Solan field about 100 miles west of Shetland achieved first oil last April after long delays.

Premier is now expecting first oil on its flagship Catcher development around the start of December.

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