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Mining & Metals

17 December 2010

Fortescue closes expansion bonds Australian iron ore producer Fortescue Metals has closed a $1.5 billion senior unsecured bond issue as part of its expansion funding programme. The lead manager of the seven-year bonds, which are callable in three years and rated B/BB+ (S&P/Fitch), is JP Morgan. The financing will contribute to an $8.4 billion capital spending plan that would bring Fortescue’s production from 55 million tonnes per year to 155 million tpy. Of the total capital expenditure, $4.6 billion would go towards expanding the producer’s existing rail, port and handl­ing infrastructure, and building a new rail line, $1.5 billion would go towards ex­panding Fortescue’s Chichester asset, and $2.3 billion towards bringing the new Solomon prospect to production. Fortescue has been a frequent visitor to the US high-yield market, and has become well-known name among investors. It made its debut, and constructed its first Pilbara mine, with a $2 billion high-yield bond in August...

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