Virgin Media is to issue $1 billion in secured bonds as the first step to refinancing its main bank debt on terms similar to its existing credit. The issue will have an eight-year maturity. The proceeds will offer greater flexibility to the operator, which was facing repaying £3.1 billion (E3.44bn) in 2012. Virgin Media has a total debt burden of more than £4 billion.
Virgin Media wants to get terms as close as possible to its existing bank debt while simultaneously putting off the time when it had to repay its creditors. The bonds, secured on Virgin Media's assets, would stand in line at an equal point with the bank debt they replaced in terms of repayment in the event of the company's default.