Source - LSE Regulatory
RNS Number : 9676N
Blackstone Loan Financing Limited
26 January 2023
 

26 January 2023

Blackstone Loan Financing Limited

(the "Company")

Shareholder Consultation

The Board announces a shareholder consultation on potential policy amendments in light of the prevailing and persistent discount to net asset value ("NAV") at which the Company's shares trade and with a view to broadening investor interest in the Company's shares and maximising shareholder total return. Although the Company has implemented multiple share buyback programmes to assist in managing the discount to NAV, the Board believes that greater measures are required. The Board will therefore commence a shareholder consultation to seek views on two potential policy amendments:

Potential Exit Opportunity

The Board is giving consideration to a potential exit opportunity for shareholders, either as a one-off event or over regular intervals. It is expected that should such proposal be put forward to shareholders, any exit opportunity will be by way of the creation of a new share class, which would return capital to holders of such shares as investments are realised over time.

Reinvestment/Distribution of Excess Net Income

On 23 January 2023, the Company announced its target annual dividend for 2023 of between €0.08 and €0.09 per ordinary share, which will consist of quarterly payments of €0.02 per ordinary share for the first three quarters and a final quarter payment of a variable amount to be determined at that time(1).  This represents an increase over the 2022 annual target of between €0.07 and €0.08 per ordinary share, and a dividend yield of between 11.27% and 12.86% based on the BGLF closing price of €0.71 on 20 January 2023.

The target annual dividend is set at a level that the Board believes provides an attractive income to shareholders, while also allowing the Company to retain a proportion of the distributions it receives from Blackstone Corporate Funding ("BCF") (after costs) ("Excess Net Income") for share repurchases to manage the share price discount to NAV and re-investment.

The Board intends to consult with shareholders over the potential for a reallocation of the Excess Net Income to allow for either or any combination of:

·      an expansion of the existing share buyback programme;

·      a potential further increase in the quarterly and/or annual dividend level; or

·      direct primary market CLO Income Note investments in Blackstone managed and controlled CLOs. Such investments will be similar to those indirectly owned by the Company through its investment via BCF.

Singer Capital Markets and Winterflood Securities, joint financial advisers and brokers to the Company, will contact key shareholders in due course. Any institutional shareholders not contacted by Singer Capital Markets or Winterflood Securities wishing to participate in the shareholder consultation are invited to contact Singer Capital Markets or Winterflood Securities.

The results of the Board's review following the shareholder consultation process will be announced in due course.  Any proposals may be conditional on approval by shareholders at an EGM, and further details, including the benefits to the Company and its shareholders, and any potential related risks, will be set out in a shareholder circular convening the EGM to be published by the Company if appropriate.

(1)   The target dividend set out in this announcement is a target only and not a profit forecast. It should not be taken as an indication of the Company's expected future performance or results. There is no guarantee that the target dividend set out in this announcement can or will be achieved or can be continued if achieved. There may be other additional risks, uncertainties and factors that could cause the returns generated by the Company to be materially lower than the target dividend set out in this announcement. Accordingly, investors should not place any reliance on such target.

 

 

The information contained within this announcement constitutes inside information.

The person responsible for arranging for the release of this announcement on behalf of the Company is Nicole Troy of BNP Paribas S.A., Jersey Branch, Company Secretary.

Enquiries:

 

Blackstone Loan Financing Limited

Charlotte Valeur, Chair

 

via BNP Paribas

BNP Paribas

 

01534 709178 / 813873

Singer Capital Markets

James Maxwell / Alaina Wong (Corporate Finance)

Alan Geeves / Sam Greatrex (Sales)

 

020 7496 3000

 

Winterflood Investment Trusts

Neil Langford (Corporate Finance)

Darren Willis (Sales)

020 3100 0000

 

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