Lionsgate gets $340 million credit facility with JPMorgan, Wachovia

MUMBAI: Lionsgate has finalized arrangements for a new five-year, $340 million revolving credit facility that helps position the Company for continued future growth, it was announced by Lionsgate vice chairman Michael Burns. The new facility, agented by JPMorgan in conjunction with Wachovia Bank, can be increased to as much as $500 million and replaces the previous $215 million credit facility, also with JPMorgan.

"This new facility is another component of Lionsgate’s strong balance sheet, a key driver of our growth in the future," said Burns. "With $371 million in cash and cash equivalents at the end of fiscal 2008, no corporate bank debt, long-term sub debt locked in at approximately 3.31 per cent and this new facility, we are well positioned to take advantage of potential strategic opportunities that may arise, consistent with our business plan."

"It is a testament to Lionsgate’s senior management team, business plan, financial strength and track record of growth and success that this facility closed so quickly in the current market environment," said JPMorgan managing director Christa Thomas. "The facility was actually oversubscribed as participating banks saw Lionsgate’s unique vision for monetizing their content leadership."

Lionsgate has continued to build its strong balance sheet at the same time that it has invested more than $150 million in growing its business over the past three years with the acquisition of Redbus Film Distributors in the U.K., the Debmar-Mercury television syndication company, independent filmed entertainment studio Mandate Pictures, a 42 per cent investment in leading young men’s online site, a 43 per cent investment in independent producer and distributor Roadside Attractions and the launch of the FEARNet branded horror channel with partners Sony and Comcast.

The new facility was orchestrated for Lionsgate by Burns, Chief Financial Officer Jim Keegan and EVP Business and Legal Affairs James Gladstone. Morgan Lewis and Bockius served as outside counsel for JPMorgan and Jim Russell of Heenan Blaikie was outside counsel for Lionsgate on the deal.