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Nuveen issuing $1.145B below-grade bonds

Updated: October 12, 2012 6:20AM

Chicago-based fund management firm Nuveen Investments Inc. has drawn a below-investment grade rating for $1.145 billion in bonds it is issuing. The company also is obtaining a $435 million loan, said Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services.

S&P cited the company’s growing indebtedness, now at $4.5 billion, in assigning the bonds a “CCC” rating, which is eight steps below investment grade. “On the positive side,” S&P said, “the transactions extend near-term debt maturities.”

The ratings agency said Nuveen will use proceeds in part to prepay $935 million in notes due in 2015, plus other debt maturing sooner. The 2015 notes were paying an interest rate of 10.5 percent.

Nuveen’s new unsecured debt is due in 2017 and 2020.

The company declined to discuss specifics of the debt issuance beyond the following statement: “While Nuveen currently has no significant debt maturities before 2015, positive trends in the markets and the continued strength of our business fundamentals have enabled us to opportunistically seek to further extend our maturity profile and look to refinance our debt at attractive long-term rates.”

Madison Dearborn Partners LLC owns Nuveen.

David Roeder

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