KINGSEY FALLS, QC, Feb. 13 /CNW Telbec/ - Cascades Inc. ("Cascades") (CAS
on the Toronto Stock Exchange) announces today that it has entered into an
agreement to amend its existing bank credit agreement. Under the terms of the
amendment the existing financial covenants, namely the maximum funded debt to
capitalization ratio of 65% and the minimum interest coverage ratio of 2.25x,
will remain unchanged until maturity in October 2012.
In consideration of this covenant extension the variable interest rate
applicable to borrowings outstanding was increased by 200 basis points. The
amendment also cancels the unsecured revolving credit facility in the amount
of $100 million which was originally scheduled to terminate in June 2009.
The amount of the Company's secured revolving credit and term facilities
($750 million and $100 million respectively) and their maturity date (December
2011 and October 2012 respectively) stay unchanged. In addition, the amendment
should be implemented in the coming weeks.
Commenting on the amendment, Mr. Alain Lemaire, President and Chief
Executive Officer stated: "This measure constitutes one more step in our
ongoing efforts to improve financial flexibility. While we are currently
within the requirements of our bank credit agreement and expect to remain so,
we believe it is appropriate to pursue this amendment given the volatile
economic environment. Moreover, despite the interest rate adjustment, the cost
of borrowings under our facilities is lower than when we initially entered
into the agreement. With cash availability standing at approximately $300
million, no debt maturity until the end of 2011 and a more favourable cost
environment, I am confident that we have the resources necessary to continue
developing Cascades through these uncertain times."
Founded in 1964, Cascades produces, converts and markets packaging and
tissue products composed mainly of recycled fibres. Cascades employs close to
13,000 employees who work in more than 100 modern and flexible production
units located in North America and Europe. Cascades' management philosophy,
its 45 years of experience in recycling, its continued efforts in research and
development are strengths which enable the company to create new products for
its customers. The Cascades' shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under
the ticker symbol CAS.
Certain statements in this release, including statements regarding future
results and performance, are forward-looking statements (as such term is
defined under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995) based on
current expectations. The accuracy of such statements is subject to a number
of risks, uncertainties and assumptions that may cause actual results to
differ materially from those projected, including, but not limited to, the
effect of general economic conditions, decreases in demand for the Company's
products, increases in raw material costs, fluctuations in selling prices and
adverse changes in general market and industry conditions and other factors
listed in the Company's Securities and Exchange Commission filings.
For further information:
For further information: MEDIA: Hubert Bolduc, Vice-President,
Communications and Public Affairs, (514) 912-3790; INVESTORS: Didier Filion,
Director, Investor relations, (514) 282-2697; Source: Christian Dubé,
Vice-President and Chief Financial Officer