Daily News: August 9, 2013

Merrill, Others Arrange Asbury Automotive Facility Amendment

Asbury Automotive Group announced that it amended and restated its five-year syndicated senior credit facility. Under the amended and restated facility, the new vehicle inventory floor plan facility was increased by $200 million, bringing the total size of the credit facility to $1.1 billion.

The syndication was arranged through Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith. JPMorgan Chase Bank and Wells Fargo Bank served as co-syndication agents. Mercedes-Benz Financial Services USA and Toyota Motor Credit served as co-documentation agents. Bank of America will serve as administrative agent.

The new vehicle and used vehicle floor plan interest rates will also decrease 25 basis points to one-month LIBOR plus 125 basis points and one-month LIBOR plus 150 basis points, respectively. Additionally, the maturity was extended from October 2016 to August 2018.

The amended and restated facility provides for the following borrowings on a revolving basis:

  • up to $825 million for new vehicle inventory floor plan financing,
  • up to $100 million for used vehicle inventory floor plan financing and other general corporate purposes, and
  • up to $175 million for general corporate purposes.
  • The amended and restated facility also provides for the expansion of the availability thereunder, subject to certain conditions, up to a total availability of $1.4 billion.

    Additional lenders in the new syndicated credit facilities include five manufacturer-affiliated finance companies — American Honda Finance, BMW Group Financial Services NA, Mercedes-Benz Financial Services USA, Nissan Motor Acceptance and Toyota Motor Credit Corporation — and seven commercial banks and other lending institutions — Bank of America, Bank of the West, Deutsche Bank Trust Company Americas, JPMorgan Chase Bank, Mass Mutual Asset Finance, U.S. Bank and Wells Fargo Bank.

    “The amended credit facility strengthens our financial flexibility and reduces our floor plan borrowing costs for the next five years” said Scott Krenz, Asbury’s SVP and CFO. “We are extremely pleased with the continued support from both our banking and manufacturing partners.”

    Asbury Automotive Group is one of the largest automobile retailers in the U.S.