Creditors plan financial offensive for Eurotunnel

Paris/London: Eurotunnel creditors are preparing a financial comms offensive as lending banks co-ordinate a strategy for their investment in the debt-stricken firm.

Eurotunnel’s creditor banks, believed to include Credit Agricole, the European Investment Bank and US monoline insurer MBIA, have formed a co-ordination committee and have launched a pitch for PR support.

NM Rothschild, the investment bank advising Eurotunnel’s creditors, declined to comment.

But sources close to the process said that the pitch was at an early stage and that the PR agencies participating have not been informed of the exact nature of the brief.

Eurotunnel creditors formed the creditor committee to prepare a combined strategy for the company’s situation, including the possibility of the firm defaulting on its debt. Creditors could force its new management to step down in the event of a default, although lenders might also prefer to reach a consensual agreement with Eurotunnel on how to restructure its £6.4bn debt.

A similar agreement to tackle Eurotunnel’s debt problem, Project Galaxie, was wrecked last month after rebel shareholders led by the former French presidential candidate Nicolas Miguet ousted the firm’s then management (PRWeek, 16 April).

Eurotunnel’s new chairman Jacques Maillot intends to outline a strategy within the next three months to get the company back on form.

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