Big River Steel has closed on a $1.225 billion financing agreement, the company has announced. About $600 million will be in the form of senior secured notes due in 2025; a six-year, $400-million senior secured term loan; and a five-year $225-million asset-based loan.
Big River Steel will use the capital to refinance a substantial majority of its outstanding indebtedness and for general corporate and working capital purposes.
“Big River Steel is extremely proud of the overwhelming support shown by the financial community and others as we achieved another significant milestone in the growth of our company,” said Dave Stickler, chief executive officer of Big River Steel. “Our ability to attract this amount of capital so early in our operating life is a testament to the hard work of our employees and our lead technology provider, SMS group.”
BRS owns and operates a scrap metal recycling and flat-rolled steel production facility on a 1,100-acre site adjacent to the Mississippi River in Northeast Arkansas. The plant melted its first scrap metal and produced its first steel in December 2016. During the past nine months, BRS has provided steel products to over 120 customers in the automotive, energy, construction and agricultural industries.
BRS is the most expensive industrial development in the state’s history. The plant employs 435 workers, but will employ at least 525 workers. Those workers will earn an average of $75,000 per year. Construction began in the fall of 2014. The state issued $125 million worth of general obligation bonds to help spur the project.
The facility is the first steel mill to be a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, LEED, certified based on its environmental sustainability efforts, and its energy efficiency performance. The mill will not only adhere to Environmental Protection Agency standards, but it will also comply with European environmental standards, which are in some cases much more stringent.
Goldman Sachs & Co. served as the sole bookrunner manager on the notes and Goldman Sachs Banks USA served as sole lead arranger and bookrunner on the term loan facility. TPG Capital BD served as a co-manager.