Vivarte Agrees to $3.8 Billion Restructuring With 12 Lenders

Vivarte SAS, the French retailer in talks to restructure 2.8 billion euros ($3.8 billion) of loans, reached a deal with lenders controlling more than 50 percent of the debt.

Alcentra Ltd., Babson Capital Management LLC, and Oaktree Capital Group LLC are among 12 lenders backing a proposal to reduce the company’s debt to 800 million euros and convert the remainder into equity, according to an e-mailed statement from Paris-based Vivarte. The plan, which will be voted on by the retailer’s 170 creditors, requires a cash injection of 500 million euros into the business.

“I am very pleased with the progress we’ve made and the support we’ve got from our lenders,” said Marc Lelandais, Vivarte’s chief executive officer in a telephone interview. “I’m confident we’re heading in the right direction.”

Vivarte is seeking to restructure its borrowings after failing to persuade enough lenders to waive loan covenants that capped its ratio of debt to earnings. The company, founded in 1896 to sell “elegant but affordable shoes,” was bought by London-based Charterhouse Capital Partners LLP in 2007 in a deal financed with 3.4 billion euros of loans.

The deal was presented at a bank meeting today after the company received restructuring proposals from five groups of lenders.

To contact the reporter on this story: Julie Miecamp in London at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Shelley Smith at Jennifer Joan Lee, Michael Shanahan

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