Miramar, Fla., March 29, 2004— Maritime Telecommunications Network, a closely held provider of communications services on cruise ships, has been recapitalized with a $20 million credit facility from Bank of America, according to the company that acquired MTN last year.
Falconhead Capital, a private-equity firm, bought MTN for $30 million in February 2003. Bank of America structured and provided senior debt financing for that acquisition.
Falconhead said that as a result of the recapitalization, Falconhead investors are receiving about 80% of the equity capital they committed to the acquisition. Also, all of the remaining acquisition-related debt is being retired, and a new bank facility is being set up.
Falconhead investors provided about $14 million in equity in the acquisition. Under the recapitalization they are receiving about $12 million, said Roy Winnick, a spokesman for Falconhead, or about 80% of their investment.
If Falconhead sells MTN, he said, the investors will get back the remainder of their initial investments, plus any profits from the sale.
The $20 million recap is being structured into two credit facilities: a $15 million term loan and a $5 million revolving line of credit.
Falconhead Capital purchased Maritime Telecommunications from American Tower Corp., a publicly traded owner, operator, and developer of broadcast and wireless communications sites in North America. MTN, its former subsidiary unit, provides satellite-based communications, networking, and other services to the cruise and offshore oil and gas industries.
Last week it announced a joint venture with AT&T Wireless that will allow it to sell on-board cellphone services as well.
The joint venture will sell the two companies' services to cruiseline companies as a package deal. The cruise operators, however, won't bill the customers for their usage time. Instead, the call charges will appear on the bill the passenger gets from his wireless carrier.
Carnival Cruise Lines is testing the service, according to David Moross, chairman and CEO of Falconhead.
Having NGP become a shareholder was "strictly a strategic move" for getting into the oil and gas business, said Mr. Moross. So far MTN has announced contracts for offshore installations operated by Baker Oil Tools, Heerema Marine Contractors, and others.