ZAGREB, May 29 (Reuters) - Croatia’s heavily indebted food producer and retailer Agrokor expects to complete talks with creditors on a new loan soon, the company’s crisis manager said on Monday.
Agrokor, the biggest employer in the Balkans with some 60,000 employees, was put under state management in early April after it built up debts that amounted to at least 40.4 billion kuna ($6.09 billion) at the end of March.
The firm received an initial cash injection worth 80 million euros ($89.34 million) in mid-April to keep the business running. A new injection is expected to be worth up to 350 million euros.
“We’re at the end of talks on a new loan for Agrokor. You can soon expect to be given a concrete figure and names of the creditors which include both local and foreign banks,” Ante Ramljak, the state-appointed crisis manager, told reporters.
Ramljak, who will steer the 15-month restructuring, did not give a precise date.
Sources in Agrokor said the loan could be agreed this week.
Ramljak said creditors showed interest in providing more funds for the new loan than needed by Agrokor.
“All the creditors are offered a roll-up option. It means that for each kuna offered as a new loan the creditors will be granted a senior status for each kuna or less from previous funding,” Ramljak said after talks with Russia’s Sberbank , a top creditor which was invited to participate in the new loan.
“We’ve yet to fine tune what proportion of an old loan would be granted a senior status if fresh funds are provided,” he said.
($1 = 6.6300 kuna)
$1 = 0.8955 euros Reporting by Igor Ilic; Editing by Edmund Blair