Terms emerge on financing for Blackstone’s Thomson Reuters unit buy: Reuters

Details of the $13.5 billion loan and bond financing backing U.S. private equity firm Blackstone Group’s (BX.N) acquisition of a majority stake in Thomson Reuters’ Financial and Risk (F&R) unit (TRI.TO) are emerging, banking sources said on Thursday.

The deal is being led by JP Morgan, Bank of America Merrill Lynch and Citigroup. More than 20 banks were invited to join at the next level to underwrite 28 percent of the deal, the sources said.

Blackstone is seeking credit approval by Friday, they said, adding that there could be six to seven tiers of commitments. Blackstone declined to comment.

The deal consists of a $8 billion-equivalent term loan B (TLB), which is split between $5.5 billion and $2.5 billion-equivalent in euros.

The financing also includes $3 billion-equivalent of secured bonds split between $2 billion and $1 billion-equivalent in euros, and $2.5 billion-equivalent of unsecured bonds split between $1.8 billion and $700 million-equivalent in euros, the sources said.

The company will also place a $750 million revolving credit facility.

The final splits could be subject to change, depending on investors’ demand for the deal, sources said.

Additional funding comes from $1 billion in preferred equity, $3 billion of cash equity that Blackstone is contributing, and $2.5 billion of existing equity, based on the $20 billion valuation, that will be rolled over.

Leverage is expected to be around 4.5x through the secured debt and 5.6x total, after Ebitda adjustments.