ECONOMY

Greece’s Intralot sells its first bonds since 2006

Intralot SA, the Greek developer of online lottery and gaming systems, is meeting investors for its first bond sale since 2006 as it offers to buy back notes maturing at the end of this year.

The company’s Intralot Finance Luxembourg SA unit is planning to raise 300 million euros from five-year securities to repay existing debt, according to a person familiar with the plan.

The Athens-based company is also offering to buy back all or part of its 140 million euros of outstanding 2.25 percent convertible bonds due December 2013, it said in a statement on Monday.

The average yield investors demand to hold high-yield bonds in Europe fell 11 basis points to 5.88 percent, the biggest decline since February 25, as investors anticipate more clarity on central bank stimulus when the Federal Reserve meets tomorrow.

Intralot is the fourth Greek company to sell bonds this year, joining Frigoglass SA, a junk-rated supplier of refrigerator equipment, and Hellenic Petroleum SA, the nation’s largest refiner.

“This year has been strong for Greek issuance as investors seek extra yield and Intralot is continuing the trend,” said Juan Esteban Valencia, a strategist at Societe Generale SA in Paris.

“Later this week, the Fed meets again and issuers will try to get business done ahead of that meeting in case it causes more volatility.”

Intralot will end its investor meetings in Athens on Thursday, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the details are private.

The new notes are expected to be rated B1 by Moody’s Investors Service, four levels below investment grade, the person said.

[Bloomberg]