Las Vegas Sands plans exchangeable bonds sale

Sep 2, 2009 7:29 PM
Staff & Wire Reports |

Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS) said Wednesday that it plans to raise up to $600 million in proceeds from an exchangeable bonds sale, as the casino operator looks to boost its liquidity.

The Sheldon Adelson-led company said it will be mandatory for the bonds to be exchanged into common stock of one of its units pending its Hong Kong IPO. A subsidiary of Las Vegas Sands submitted an application to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange for a potential listing late last month.

The bonds are set to mature on Sept. 4, 2014, according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission

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Adelson said in a statement that the bonds sale will improve the Las Vegas-based company's liquidity, with the financing's completion expected in "a matter of days."

The exchangeable bonds sale is part of a series of moves Las Vegas Sands is taking to strengthen its financial position, according to President Michael Leven. Aside from the bonds sale and potential Hong Kong IPO, the company also recently amended a $3.3 billion Macau credit agreement.

Las Vegas Sands reworked the credit agreement in a way that would let it sell a minority interest in its Macau operations to raise cash. The amendment gives the casino operator six quarters of relief from some requirements of its debt agreements. Las Vegas Sands also can issue senior secured or unsecured notes in Macau.

The casino operator, hit by a funding crunch as the recession deepened, had a debt load of $10.41 billion at the first quarter's end. The company, like many in the sector, has struggled as gamblers have tightened their spending and decided to frequent local casinos more regularly during the recession.

The company owns the Venetian and Palazzo hotel-casinos on the Las Vegas Strip, as well as Sands Macao, Venetian Macau and Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem in Pennsylvania, among other properties.

Las Vegas Sands is also developing resorts on the Cotai strip, a short drive from Macau's main casino area.

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