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Monday, July 19, 2010

Lead News: Bulgaria's Intertrust Seeks $150m

Lead News: Bulgaria's Intertrust Seeks $150m

Bulgarian lead and zinc producer Intertrust Holdings is seeking $150 million to upgrade its smelters and double output and sales.

The company’s Olovno Tzinkov Komplex AD smelter will be completed by 2013 and will help almost double annual sales to $220 million.

Bulgaria’s Environment Ministry approved a 40 million-euro ($51.7 million) upgrade of the lead smelter a week ago and the company now has to raise the funding said Chairman Valentin Zahariev.

Intertrust is also building an 80 million-euro galvanized steel plant near Sofia on the site of an old pipe factory, with planned output of 600,000 tons of galvanized steel a year.

“We need to raise a total of $150 million to complete our investment projects,” said Mr Zahariev. “We have applied for financing from U.S. funds for part of it. We will also consider other forms including an IPO, corporate bonds or bank loans. It all depends on the cost.”

Intertrust has already borrowed 85 million euros in loans from Swiss banks to upgrade its zinc smelter, he said. Asturiana de Zinc SA, a Spanish zinc producer, designed the project and supplied the equipment.

The modernised zinc smelter will increase output from 24,000 tons in 2009 to 45,000 tons, while the lead smelter will double output to 60,000 tons.

“The modernization of the two units will help cut pollution, reduce greenhouse emissions, improve the quality of all of our products, double output and cut costs,” said Mr Zahariev.

Apart from the Gorubso mines in Madan in southern Bulgaria, Intertrust also runs five metal, tool and engineering plants in Serbia. Eight-five percent of its output is exported, mostly to Italy, Germany, Austria and Turkey.

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