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Last Updated: Wednesday, 1 November 2006, 08:23 GMT
Eurotunnel sends out debt plans
Eurotunnel train
Eurotunnel says it believes the plan is close to being approved
Eurotunnel, the Anglo-French operator of the cross-Channel rail tunnel, has sent out its restructuring proposals to its creditors.

Creditors will have to vote on the plans before the end of November.

Under the deal, existing shareholders would have a minimum 13% stake in a new company that would make an offer for Eurotunnel's shares early next year.

Eurotunnel, which has a debt mountain of 6.2bn ($11.7bn), will go into administration if the plan is defeated.

Bank support

The restructuring plan involves the creation of a new firm, Groupe Eurotunnel, bolstered by a long-term loan of 2.84bn from a consortium of banks including Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank and Citigroup.

Groupe Eurotunnel would make an exchange tender offer to current Eurotunnel shareholders and would issue convertible hybrid notes worth nearly 1.3bn.

Eurotunnel boss Jacques Gounon has said he believes Eurotunnel is close to having the necessary majority required to approve the restructuring.

The company ran up massive debts during construction of the Channel tunnel, which opened in 1994.

Eurotunnel's business plan quickly got into difficulties when actual passenger numbers failed to meet its projections.

A look at Eurotunnel's restructuring plan

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