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Lenders including Westpac, Rabobank, RBS and JP Morgan take shares in TV3's new parent company after receivership

Posted in Business

Westpac is back as a shareholder in TV3 after a receivership for a second time.

KordaMentha, receiver's of TV3's parent company MediaWorks NZ Limited yesterday said a conditional sale and purchase agreement had been signed between it and MediaWorks Holdings Ltd. The deal is expected to settle on September 30.

MediaWorks Holdings is owned by MediaWorks Finance Ltd, which is in turn owned by MediaWorks Investments Ltd. The latter's shareholders are MediaWorks' funders and include Westpac NZ with 14.61%, Rabobank with 14.59%, the Royal Bank of Scotland with 21.91%, JP Morgan with 6.48%, plus US private equity firm Oaktree Capital with 26.73% and fellow private equity firm TPG Capital with 15.69%.

MediaWorks was tipped into receivership in June. This came after a long struggle with a crushing debt burden inherited through Australian private equity group Ironbridge Capital's leveraged buyout of MediaWorks in 2007, which was valued at about  $800 million. Ironbridge lost all of its equity investment, about $300 million. MediaWorks' lenders have written off about $600 million of debt.

First time around TV3 was tipped into receivership by Westpac in 1990. The bank converted debt to equity and eventually sold out completely in 1997 to Canada's CanWest. See Brian Gaynor's MediaWorks delivers lessons on leverage for further detail and background.

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