Business news from Ukraine

AGRO HOLDING MRIYA LAUNCHES FIRST STATION TO MIX CROP PROTECTION CHEMICALS

Mriya Agro Holding has launched its first crop protection chemical mix station in Khorostkiv, Ternopil region, to the tune of UAH 1.8 million. “We’ve launched a station to mix crop protection products in Khorostkiv to reduce the use of chemicals to a minimum and increase the speed of their application. The payback of the station in keeping with our estimates will be 12 months. Initially, the cost of the station was estimated at UAH 2.5 million, but we managed to reduce to UAH 1.8 million thanks to its re-equipment and refinement. We plan to launch 15 more such stations at all clusters of the agricultural holding,” head of Mriya Agro Holding’s agronomic department Oleksandr Khmeliuk said at a press conference.
According to him, the holding plans to approve a strategy in November 2018 for the construction of mix stations with a model design of the station, which will be used by all clusters of Mriya.
“Then it will be possible to evaluate the needed investments and the timing of the construction of stations for mixing crop protection products,” Khmeliuk said.
Mriya Agro Holding is a vertically integrated agro-industrial holding founded in 1992 by Ivan Huta. Today, its land bank is 165,000 hectares. The capacity of its silos and grain storages is estimated at 380,000 tonnes.

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AGROHOLDING MRIYA RECEIVES PURCHASE OFFER FROM INTERNATIONAL STRATEGIC INVESTOR

Mriya agroholding in June 2018 received an offer to acquire the entire business and assets of the company from an international strategic investor who has experience of operations in Ukraine. “The cost of this offer envisages (if the transaction is signed) compensation to holders of bonds issued by Mriya Farming in connection with the restructuring of about 50 to 60 cents per U.S. dollar of face value of new bonds outstanding after the restructuring is completed (expenses related to the transaction deducted),” the press service of the agroholding reported.
The offer involves a number of conditions, including the successful completion of the restructuring of the company and its subsidiaries, as well as obtaining all necessary regulatory approvals. Secured debt is proposed for acceptation by the strategic investor and servicing in accordance with existing or other agreements between the potential buyer and secured creditors.
“The company intends to enter into negotiations with the offeror on the terms of the potential deal to approve the necessary documentation for the binding offer. After the completion of the restructuring any sale of the company is to be agreed with the shareholders of the company in accordance with the terms of the issue of new bonds and shareholders’ agreement of Mriya Farming adopted in line with the terms of the restructuring,” Mriya said.
At the same time, the agricultural holding said that the offer is not a guarantee of the signing of the deal, a condition of which is still reaching an agreement on the final terms of the documents required for the transaction.
Mriya reported that Rothschild is the sole financial advisor, and Hogan Lovells acts as a legal advisor in matters related to the sale. As reported, in May 2017, Mriya and IFC approved the conditions for restructuring of Mriya’s debt. The parties agreed to split the debt into a secured and unsecured part. They also stipulated terms for restructuring the secured part of the debt. Mriya’s unsecured debt to IFC will be restructured on common conditions for all unsecured creditors.
Mriya’s total debt is $1.087 billion, of which $46 million is loans for working capital, $7 million for leasing of agricultural machinery, $130 million is secured loans, and $904 million is unsecured loans.
After the restructuring, the amount of secured loans will be reduced to $62 million, unsecured ones to $213 million. Mriya is a vertically integrated agro-industrial holding founded by Ivan Huta in 1992. Today, its land bank is 165,000 ha in Ternopil, Khmelnytsky, Ivano-Frankivsk, Chernivtsi, Lviv and Rivne regions. The capacity of its grain storage facilities is estimated at 380,000 tonnes.

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AGROHOLDING MRIYA PLANS TO INCREASE EBIDTA BY 33.3%

Mriya agroholding plans to boost its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) by 33.3%in 2018, to $32 million, Mriya Chief Operating Officer (COO) Andriy Hryhorov has said. “We plan to reach $32 million for EBITDA this year,” he told reporters at a press conference.
Hryhorov said that in the past three years Mriya has invested over $25 million in agricultural machinery fleet.
“This spring we purchased 22 units of agricultural machinery. We continue to expand the machinery fleet after our default. We are also writing off the old equipment and replacing it with new equipment. In the next three or five years we plan to invest over $30 million in the machinery fleet. The new equipment is bought, taking into account the requirements of precision agriculture. Some 50% of our fleet is ready to work with this technology,” Hryhorov said.
According to him, now the Ukrainian market of agricultural machinery has enough harvesters for leasing, so the agroholding decided to consistently reduce the number of its own combines in operation.
“It is economically unprofitable to invest $15,000-20,000 per combine every year. We plan to reduce their number in our machinery fleet to 50 units and lease the rest,” the COO said.
Mriya is a vertically integrated agro-industrial holding founded by Ivan Huta in 1992. Today, its land bank is 165,000 ha in Ternopil, Khmelnytsky, Ivano-Frankivsk, Chernivtsi, Lviv and Rivne regions. The capacity of its grain storage facilities is estimated at 380,000 tonnes.

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INTERNATIONAL FINANCE CORPORATION MAY BUY GRAIN STORAGE FACILITIES IN UKRAINE

The World Bank Group’s International Finance Corporation (IFC) may acquire three grain storage facilities from Mriya Agro Holding in Ternopil region as part of debt restructuring.
IFC requested respective permits for assets owned by private enterprise Noriia Zakhid, Black Bryony Holdings LLC and Elagri-Derenivka LLC, the Antimonopoly Committee of Ukraine has said.
As reported, Mriya and IFC in May 2017 agreed on the terms of restructuring of the holding’s debt. The parties agreed to split the debt into a secured and unsecured part. They also stipulated terms for restructuring the secured part of the debt. Mriya’s unsecured debt to IFC will be restructured on common conditions for all unsecured creditors.
Mriya’s total debt is $1.087 billion, of which $46 million is loans for working capital, $7 million for leasing of agricultural machinery, $130 million is secured loans, and $904 million is unsecured loans.
After the restructuring, the amount of secured loans will be reduced to $62 million, unsecured ones to $ 213 million.
Mriya is a vertically integrated agro-industrial holding founded by Ivan Huta in 1992. Today, its land bank is 165,000 ha in Ternopil, Khmelnytsky, Ivano-Frankivsk, Chernivtsi, Lviv and Rivne regions. The capacity of its grain storage facilities is estimated at 380,000 tonnes.

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AGROHOLDING MRIYA TO INCREASE FIELDS WITH SPRING CROPS BY 20% IN 2018

Fields with spring crops of Mriya agroholding this year would expand by almost 21% compared with 2017, to 103,250 ha, the company said on Tuesday. The company said in a press release that this year the sowing campaign was started later than it was planned due to late spring.
“Due to weather, we will have to carry out the spring sowing campaign on a tight schedule. We have adjusted our plans and intentionally increased the share of early grain crops, spring barley and rapeseeds, to 14,200 hectares and 7,500 ha in the structure of the areas planted by Mriya. We also succeeded in promptly contracting additional tillage equipment and seeders, so we hope to complete the sowing of spring crops without falling behind the plan,” Mriya Chief Operation Officer Andriy Hryhorov said.
This spring, the strategic agricultural crops for the holding are sunflower, with 33,500 hectares, corn (14,800 hectares), soybean (24,700 hectares) and sugar beet, the areas under which are doubled compared with last year, to 7,200 ha. Traditionally, peas (356 hectares) and potatoes (660 ha) are also present in the structure of the areas planted by Mriya.
During the sowing campaign 2018 some of the areas the agroholding will be sowed with seeds of its own production, in particular, soybeans.

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MRIYA CEO: OUR AGROHOLDING COULD BE SOLD ONLY AFTER DEBT RESTRUCTURING

A deal to sell Mriya agroholding could take place only after the completion of restructuring of its old debt, the agroholding’s press service has reported. According to the report, there is the interest of potential investors to the company. In particular, in 2017, Kernel and several large agricultural market players offered creditors of Mriya to buy the company. In 2018, some offers from Ukrainian and international companies arrived.
“For our creditors, the current owners of Mriya, agriculture is not a core business, and servicing the working capital of Mriya is a compulsory measure. Therefore, as I have repeatedly said, the arrival of a strategic investor is an ideal option for the further development of Mriya,” the press service said, citing Mriya CEO Simon Cherniavsky. According to him, before the completion of debt restructuring, there is neither a subject of a potential transaction nor a legal mechanism for its implementation.
“We have completed the restructuring of the most of the secured debt and started implementing the agreements reached with unsecured creditors. At this stage we have faced a number of difficulties related to the novelty and uniqueness of the procedure for the Ukrainian legislation and the enforcement system, which delays the process. I would refrain from giving forecasts,” CEO said.
Mriya said that the working capital of the agroholding today is financed by its creditors, mainly – bondholders from the United States and Europe. “We have funds in the full amount for this season: we have enough funds for sowing and harvesting, paying rents, fulfilling social obligations and even replenishing the technical park and investing in technology development. Mriya is working in a usual mode and is confidently looking to the future,” said Cherniavsky said. Previously, the media reported that negotiations about the possible purchase of Mriya by Continental Farmers Group are being held.

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