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September 24, 2009

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Yell has plans to get out of the red

DEBT-LADEN British yellow pages publisher Yell Group Plc plans to raise at least 500 million pounds (US$817 million) by selling new shares, using the proceeds to repay creditors, it said yesterday.

Yell, which is battling an advertising slump as it negotiates a structural shift from print to online publishing, currently has debts of about 4 billion pounds compared with its market capitalization of about 583 million pounds.

The company said current trading was in line with its previous guidance, with a sales decline expected to slow to 16 percent in the next quarter from 17 percent this quarter. It expects no material improvement this fiscal year.

Unveiling a refinancing plan under discussion since June, Yell said it intended to pay off a further 300 million pounds of debt within 18 months through a receivables securitization, high-yield bond, a larger initial equity issue or other means.

Yell publishes print and online directories in Britain, the United States, Spain and Latin America.


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