San Antonio — The Progressive Retailers Organization was at the Westin La Cantera Hill Coun
El Segundo, Calif. — DirecTV Holdings, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hughes Electronics, intends to raise up to $2.95 billion in debt through a notes sales and a new secured credit line. It plans to privately offer up to $1.4 billion principal amount of senior notes due 2013, and also intends to arrange $1.55 billion of new senior secured credit facilities. The company expects to close the senior notes offering and the new credit facilities by early next month, and plans to distribute to Hughes the net proceeds from the sale, so Hughes can repay outstanding debt and fund its business plan through cash flow breakeven. It is expected up to $500 million of new senior secured credit facilities will be withdrawn at closing.
Washington —XM Satellite Radio has closed on its $475 million funding package, consisting of $225 million in new funds from strategic and financial investors and $250 million in payment deferrals and related credit facilities from General Motors. The company said the completion of this financing and refinancing gives it a clear path to cash flow breakeven in 2004. Previously, XM had increased its financing commitment to $475 million, with an addition of $25 million obtained from investors, in the company's proposed 10 percent Senior Secured Convertible Discount Notes, due in 2009. Even earlier, XM had announced a set of definitive financing agreements totaling $450 million, consisting of $200 million in new funds from investors and $250 million in payment deferrals and related credit facilities from General Motors. The new funds component will be increased to $225 million.
New York — Free-falling profit tied to plummeting stock prices, where share quotes have dropped under $1, has convinced the Nasdaq Stock Market to propose loosening of its $1 minimum listing requirement. With this change, companies would be given more time to lift share prices before disappearing from Nasdaq. Under the proposal, Nasdaq would extend a current pilot program — which allows grace periods to comply — to Dec. 31, 2004. Concerned companies also would have 180 calendar days, instead of 90, to meet the minimum listing requirements.