2013-12-18 15:09:01 -
Assured Guaranty (Europe) Ltd. (Assured Guaranty)* announces that it will guarantee a £73.5 million wrapped bond, issued by S4B (Issuer) PLC, to finance the regeneration of the Brunswick public housing estate in central Manchester. The publicly listed bond priced on 17 December 2013 at 4.926%, equivalent to a spread of 190 basis points over Gilts. The bonds are to be rated AA- (stable) and A2 (stable), with underlying project ratings of BBB-and Baa3, from S&P and Moody's, respectively.
Financial close is expected on Friday 20 th December 2013.
The consortium, appointed as Preferred Bidder by Manchester City Council, is led by Equitix, the infrastructure equity fund, and includes Contour Homes Ltd, and Galliford Try Construction Ltd with Lloyds Bank as the
bond arranger. Manchester will fund debt service based on housing availability and receive related PFI credits from the UK government.
As a financial guarantor, Assured Guaranty will guarantee timely payment of scheduled principal and interest to bondholders, throughout the 24-year life of the bond.
Nick Proud, Chief Executive Officer of Assured Guaranty (Europe) Ltd., commented.
"This is the third infrastructure bond that Assured Guaranty will have guaranteed in 2013, and it is continued evidence that Assured Guaranty’s bond wrap provides a cost-effective alternative to other sources of debt funding for infrastructure projects - not only for the City Council but also for the infrastructure consortium and the taxpayer, while providing enhanced security for bondholders. We are ready to work directly with other City Councils and awarding authorities, up and down the UK, to guarantee a significant quantum of infrastructure debt."
The regeneration project includes partial demolition, new construction and refurbishment of existing homes on the Brunswick estate. At completion, the estate will contain over 1,350 housing units, of which more than 850 will be for social housing and more than 500 will be private, which includes over 300 units of new private-for-sale housing that are ring fenced from the PFI transaction. This will create an improved community estate with predominately family housing, together with new parks, play areas and retail space, reinvigorating a community and economic hub close to the centre of Manchester.
*Assured Guaranty (Europe) Ltd. provides its financial guarantee together with a co-guarantee from its affiliate Assured Guaranty Municipal Corp. (AGM). Assured Guaranty Finance Overseas Ltd. (company number 4031467) (AGFOL), which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, has permission to arrange contracts of insurance including financial guarantees for its affiliate AGM. AGFOL has approved this press release.
Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements:
Any forward-looking statements made in this press release reflect the current views of Assured Guaranty Ltd. (together with its subsidiaries, the Company) with respect to future events and are made pursuant to the safe harbour provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such statements involve risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to differ materially from those set forth in these statements. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, those resulting from the Company’s inability to execute its strategies; the demand for its financial guarantees; further actions that the rating agencies may take with respect to the Company’s financial strength ratings; adverse developments in the Company’s guaranteed portfolio; the ability of the Company to negotiate mutually satisfactory transaction terms with other transaction parties; and other risks and uncertainties that have not been identified at this time, management’s response to these factors, and other risk factors identified in the Company’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which are made as of 18 December, 2013. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.
Through its subsidiaries, the Company is the leading provider of financial guarantees for principal and interest payments due on municipal, public infrastructure and structured financings. Its subsidiary AGM guarantees international infrastructure and U.S.
municipal bonds, and was previously named Financial Security Assurance Inc. (FSA) before becoming an Assured Guaranty company in July 2009.
Assured Guaranty (Europe) Ltd., a subsidiary of AGM, is the Company’s European operating platform.
Assured Guaranty (Europe) Ltd. (company number 2510099) is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.
Assured Guaranty Ltd. is a publicly traded (NYSE: AGO), Bermuda-based holding company. More information on the Company and its subsidiaries can be found at www.AssuredGuaranty.com : cts.businesswire.com/ct/CT?id=smartlink&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww ..
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