- La Caisse reaffirms the profitability of the project
- New $250-million financing agreement
- Funds managed by BlackRock to join investor group
MONTRÉAL, Aug. 11, 2016 /CNW Telbec/ - In light of significant cost overruns in the McInnis Cement project and to protect its clients' capital, la Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, in cooperation with the other shareholders of McInnis Cement, has thoroughly reassessed the profitability of the project.
This assessment confirmed:
- The cement plant's fundamental qualities – the plant and equipment are among the most advanced in the industry, with lower operating costs than the market and direct access to a marine terminal for low-cost, flexible distribution.
- Better market conditions in North America than at the time of the initial investment – with a substantial increase in North American demand, a strong US dollar and a larger cement deficit while Canadian and American plants in our target markets are operating at or near capacity.
Change of control and changes to the executive team
To address execution issues, la Caisse has entered into an agreement with Beaudier to change control in favour of la Caisse of Beaudier Ciment, the controlling shareholder of McInnis Cement, the operating company. Consequently, there is also a change of control at the McInnis Cement Board of Directors. This change of control also reflects a change in the respective investments of the partners.
Last week, the Board of Directors announced a series of changes to the executive team to strengthen the project's management and complete construction of the plant, including the nomination of a new Executive Vice-President Engineering, Construction and Operations. An international recruitment process is under way to find a new CEO.
$250 million in new financing
On this basis, la Caisse has decided to invest an additional $125-million in the form of preferred equity in the project. Funds managed by BlackRock Alternative Investors, on behalf of the firm's clients, are also joining the investor group for the first time through a $125-million debenture. This new financing, totalling $250 million, is sufficient to complete the project.
"We believe that this project has high-quality fundamentals. For this reason, la Caisse has entered into a change-of-control agreement with Beaudier. With the new executive team in place and the new capital structure we are announcing today, McInnis Cement will be able to capitalize on attractive market opportunities and generate returns for la Caisse's clients," said Christian Dubé, Executive Vice-President, Québec, at la Caisse.
"BlackRock looks forward to joining the investment consortium, on behalf of our clients, and helping to bring this low cost, state-of-the-art facility to production," said David Trucano, Managing Director at BlackRock.
The proposed transaction, including the new and additional financing, is still subject to certain conditions, including the execution and delivery of final documentation and approval by the banking syndicate.
This new financing is in addition to incremental equity investments made by McInnis Cement shareholders, as provided for in the initial investment agreement.
ABOUT CAISSE DE DÉPÔT ET PLACEMENT DU QUÉBEC
Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) is a long-term institutional investor that manages funds primarily for public and parapublic pension and insurance plans. As at December 31, 2015, it held $248.0 billion in net assets. As one of Canada's leading institutional fund managers, CDPQ invests globally in major financial markets, private equity, infrastructure and real estate. For more information, visit cdpq.com, follow us on Twitter @LaCDPQ or consult our Facebook or LinkedIn pages.
BlackRock is a global leader in investment management, risk management and advisory services. At June 30, 2016, the firm managed $4.890 trillion for institutional and retail investors around the world. Through BlackRock Alternative Investors, the firm offers access to a broad spectrum of alternative investments—including credit, hedge funds, private equity, infrastructure and real estate. As of June 30, 2016, the firm had approximately 12,700 employees in more than 30 countries and a major presence in global markets, including North and South America, Europe, Asia, Australia and the Middle East and Africa.
For additional information, please visit the Company's website at www.blackrock.com | Twitter: @blackrock_news | Blog: www.blackrockblog.com | LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/company/blackrock
SOURCE Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec
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