Suzlon Energy reduces debt by around 15%

Suzlon Energy reduces debt by around 15%

Mumbai: Suzlon Energy Ltd, India’s largest wind turbine maker, has reduced its debt by around 15% or $350 million (Rs1,642 crore).

Suzlon cleared the $780 million loan it had taken to buy a 90.72% stake in Hamburg’s Repower Systems AG, using proceeds from its 35% stake sale in Belgium-based Hansen Transmissions International NV.

It also took a new five-year, $465 million foreign line of credit from State Bank of India.

This has helped Suzlon reduce its net outstanding debt to Rs11,800 crore from the Rs13,500 crore it had at end-September, a spokesman said. The firm has cleared Rs3,500 crore worth of debt but the net reduction after the fresh loans is Rs1,700 crore.

“This transaction concludes the first phase of our refinancing exercise. We have achieved an overall improvement in our debt profile with a reduction of nearly 15%, or approximately $350 million," Sumant Sinha, Suzlon’s chief operating officer said in a statement on Friday.

Abhineet Anand, an analyst with Mumbai-based Antique Stock Broking Ltd, said the new funds will not reduce the company’s debt to a very large extent but ease its cash flows.

“Any deal is a good deal for Suzlon currently," said another analyst at a private broking firm. “But the company still can’t do much till a global economic recovery happens because the wind turbine business is very capital intensive."

Suzlon had paid €270.2 million (Rs1,821 crore) to buy the Repower stake in three tranches, the last of which was executed in June. The new five-year loan offers the company a two-year moratorium on repayment of principal amount.

Suzlon’s shares lost 0.72% a piece on Friday to close at Rs82.30 on the Bombay Stock Exchange. The benchmark index Sensex lost a little over 1%.