Fnac Darty benefits from the support of the French government... and its French banks

22/04/2020

Fnac Darty Group is the first major French company to benefit from the State Guaranteed Loan facility for an amount of 500 million euros. It is strengthening its liquidity to cope with the crisis and prepare for the recovery of its activities.

Societe Generale remains mobilised to support its clients and the economy in this unprecedented crisis context. The provision of a EUR 500 million credit line for the Fnac Darty Group under a State-backed loan (PGE – Prêt Garanti par l’Etat) is an emblematic example of this.  Agility and responsiveness were needed to execute the transaction in a very short time frame, since the French giant of multi-channel distribution is the first large company to benefit from such a facility.

This transaction will enable the group to strengthen its liquidity in order to get through the current period of lockdown and be in a favorable position for the recovery of its activities, which are suffering the shock of the coronavirus crisis. This guaranteed loan also illustrates the company's willingness to act responsibly towards its employees, suppliers and all its partners.
This facility, which has a maturity of one year with an option to extend up to five additional years, is guaranteed by the State up to 70%.  The loan was arranged by a pool of nine French banks, including Societe Generale which acted as mandated lead arranger, bookrunner and facility agent. Fnac Darty, which already had a solid financing structure, balanced between bank debt and bonds, is thus significantly securing its cash position in this unprecedented period. 
In record time, this pioneering operation has brought together the rapid support of the French government and all French banks in order to secure long-term financing in an unprecedented market context.

Enrique Martinez, Chief Executive Officer of the Fnac Darty Group, emphasizes:

This operation demonstrates banks’ support to Fnac Darty’s business model.

A long-standing relationship

Societe Generale benefits from a long-standing relationship with the Fnac Darty Group. Already in 2013, the bank acted as advisor, bookrunner and lead arranger of the post-IPO financing for the demerger between Kering and Fnac. In 2016, Societe Generale financed Fnac's acquisition of Darty, one of the main French corporate mergers of the year, enabling the new entity to become a leader in multi-channel distribution.
 

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