King & Wood Mallesons has advised the AA, the UK’s largest breakdown cover organisation, on the £1.14 billion refinancing of its existing debt package.
The refinancing includes a £200 million placing and open offer to existing investors, a £735 million offering of Class B Notes and a £209 million repayment of senior debt facilities. The Class B Notes are issued out of the existing whole business securitisation structure and understood to comprise one of the largest ever sterling high yield bond issues. The proceeds of both offerings will be used to allow the FTSE 250 listed company to replace more expensive forms of debt.
The transaction follows the appointment by King & Wood Mallesons as principal external legal adviser to the AA. The appointment will see the firm acting for the AA across the full range of legal work, including corporate, finance, regulatory, property, commercial and employment law.
Formed in 1905 by a group of motoring enthusiasts in London, today the AA has a market capitalisation of over £2.3 billion. With approximately four million members and nine million B2B customers, the AA represents over 40 per cent of the UK’s roadside assistance market.
Andrew Wingfield, Corporate Partner at King & Wood Mallesons, said: “The AA is a British institution and one of the most trusted brands in the UK, looking after 10,000 breakdowns each day. In our first transaction for the AA following our appointment, we have combined the strengths and expertise of our Financial Institutions Group to execute a complex transaction of this nature.”
The King & Wood Mallesons team was comprised of Corporate Partners Andrew Wingfield, Joseph Newitt and Delphine Currie, with associates Amy Grammer, Michaela Moore and Ofei Kwafo-Akoto; alongside Finance Partners Ian Borman and Andrew Bliss, with associates Alexandra Hunter and Briana Bentley. Tax Partner Stephen Pevsner advised on the tax aspects.