Corporate news releases

National Express announces launch of seven year bond
07 Jan 2010

The proceeds from the issue of the Bond will be used to repay the Group’s existing bank borrowings, with the Group’s existing €270 million Euro facility maturing in March 2011 expected to be repaid in full. The Bond will extend the average maturity of the Group’s remaining debt, reduce the Group’s reliance on bank financing and diversify and strengthen the Group’s overall funding structure.

Following the rights issue completed in December and this Bond issue, the Group will adjust its interest rate management arrangements. Certain of the Group's existing interest rate swaps (relating to hedging of the existing Euro denominated debt) will become ineffective and will be terminated, resulting in an exceptional expense and cash outflow of approximately £17.5 million.

Commenting, Jez Maiden, Group Finance Director, said:

“The successful launch of this bond marks a further step in delivering improvement at National Express. Over the past months, we have significantly reduced debt through a focus on cash generation, we have successfully completed a £360 million rights issue and we have now refinanced our maturing bank debt ahead of schedule. Leading bond investors have been strongly supportive of this debut bond issue.”

Enquiries:

National Express Group PLC
Jez Maiden, Group Finance Director
Nicole Lander, Director of Communications


020 7506 4324
012 1460 8401

Maitland
Neil Bennett/George Hudson


020 7379 5151

*The Bond is being issued subject to the Group obtaining two investment grade credit ratings prior to 13 January 2011. In the event that the Group does not obtain such ratings by this date, the coupon will step up by 1.25 per cent. thereafter. The Group has begun discussions with the major rating agencies to commence the rating process. There are no financial covenants contained in the Bond.