"; ?>
   

Author Archive

Oxford Finance Closes $3 Million Debt Facility with InterValve

ALEXANDRIA, Va., Jan. 21, 2015 /PRNewswire/ –Oxford Finance LLC (Oxford), a specialty finance firm that provides senior debt to life sciences and healthcare services companies, today announced the closing of a $3 million senior secured term loan agreement with InterValve, Inc. (InterValve). Proceeds of the loan will be used for product line expansion and the ongoing commericialization of the companys lead product, the V8 Aortic Valvuloplasty Balloon catheter.

InterValves aortic valve dilation device is technologically innovative and has been proven to be a safe and effective solution for treating patients with calcific aortic stenosis, said Christopher A. Herr, managing director for Oxford Finance. We are pleased to provide financing to support the growth of the company and the advancement of InterValves unique product.

We are pleased to be partnering with Oxford, said Mark Ungs, chief executive officer of InterValve. This funding will allow us to continue our commercial and development efforts.

About Oxford Finance LLC

Oxford Finance is a specialty finance firm providing senior secured loans to public and private life sciences and healthcare services companies worldwide. For over 20 years, Oxford has delivered flexible financing solutions to its clients, enabling these companies to maximize their equity by leveraging their assets. In recent years, Oxford has originated over $2 billion in loans, with lines of credit ranging from $500 thousand to $75 million. Oxford is headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia, with additional offices in California, Massachusetts, Illinois and North Carolina. For more information visit www.oxfordfinance.com.

About InterValve, Inc.

InterValve Inc. is headquartered in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The company is dedicated to advancing innovations in aortic valvuloplasty balloon catheter designs that improve procedure safety and efficacy.

SOURCE Oxford Finance LLC

RELATED LINKS

http://www.oxfordfinance.com

Construction begins on $8.7 million wastewater facility

Construction officially begins Tuesday on an $8.7 million wastewater treatment plant in Crestwood, which will allow for the closing of decades-old, temporary treatment plants.

The Oldham County Environmental Authority will celebrate the groundbreaking at 10:30 am Tuesday at the site of what will become its South Oldham Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility, 6115 Hitt Lane.

The Environmental Authority recently purchased the property, which had previously been part of a family farm, said spokeswoman Vickie Miller.

Miller said construction of the new facility is part of a plan to decommission temporary package wastewater treatment plants that were only meant to operate for a few decades. The new facility, which will be a permanent treatment facility, will allow the Environmental Authority to retire two temporary plants, she said.

The new facility is the first to be built by the Environmental Authority, which contracts with company Veolia to provide wastewater management services to about 6,000 customers in Oldham County. The Environmental Authority also manages two other wastewater treatment facilities.

At this point, Miller said, the Environmental Authority does not have formal plans for other permanent treatment facilities, although additional plants are a possibility.

The Environmental Authority has secured loans through the Kentucky Infrastructure Authority and Oldham County Fiscal Court for the capital improvements, which Miller said may result in a rate increase for customers in the future.

The board was very methodical in how they approached regionalizing their facilities, so this option of building this plant will cause rates to go up the least, she said.

At this time, the Environmental Authority is unsure how much rates may increase and when the increase may occur, she said.

The South Oldham Regional Wastewater Treatment Facility is expected to be complete in summer 2016.

Reporter Kirsten Clark can reached at (502) 582-4144 or on Twitter at @kirstenlmclark.

Just Approved: Unpaid maternity leave complicates family’s shot at buying a home

Mortgage adviser: Brenda Wyatt.

Property type: Single-family home in Sheffield Village, Oakland.

Purchase price: $653,000.

First loan amount: $450,000.

Loan type: 30-year fixed at 4.25 percent

Backstory: It’s a common scenario in the Bay Area: A young, professional couple, renting in San Francisco, plan to purchase their first home before the arrival of their first child.

This was the situation for Wyatt’s client and her husband.

The couple had a sizable down payment thanks to savings and agift from the client’s father.

My 2014 Fourth Quarter Review: The Good, The Bad And The Ugly

I am pleased to present my Fourth Quarter 2014 portfolio review. Each review helps clarify my current approach to dividend growth investing. It should be read as representing an approach that best matches our risk tolerance — one that helps both my wife and I sleep well at night when the market is as turbulent as it certainly was later in the year.

My portfolio finished the year with 46 holdings and yields roughly 4.2% at todays cost. Each holding represents less than 4% of the overall portfolio with most positions under 2%.

My portfolio was constructed starting in 2011 from the lists of Dividend Champions, Challengers and Contenders (CCCs) maintained by Seeking Alpha Contributor David Fish and available here. Nearly every stock selected from this list has the distinction of not only maintaining its dividend during the bear market of 2008 but growing it each year, with most growing at a rate greater than inflation. In addition to core CCC holdings, there are additional stocks from the Frozen Angel List and others from the Near Challengers List also complied by David. I have made my quarterly reviews including buy and sell decisions available for review each quarter since 2012.

I am a retiree who unlike most contributors on Dividend Growth investing built my portfolio after retirement. I didnt feel comfortable with the mix of stock and bond index funds recommended by our advisors at the time of our retirement. My goal from the start has been to construct and maintain a portfolio that would substitute for the traditional concept of selling holdings each month to provide necessary retirement income. Our portfolio acts as a substitute for the traditional 4% withdrawal of capital gain plus an additional withdrawal each year equal to inflation, recommended by our former advisers. We chose instead to focus on income strictly generated from dividends growing at a rate greater than inflation.

I have two major goals for our dividend growth investments: increased annual income through dividend growth greater than inflation and capital preservation. Our goal this year was a 6% growth in monthly income from my portfolio requiring a total portfolio dividend growth equal to 6%. I am pleased to report that we surpassed our goal by achieving a 10% growth in monthly income due to the dividend growth of our holdings.

Our second major goal for our dividend growth investments is capital preservation. I am pleased to report that the total return for my portfolio was 14.35% vs. 13.69% for the Samp;P 500. After subtracting income this results in an increase in capital of roughly 10%.

I still find it hard to believe that I finished the year with a 10% growth in monthly income as well as a 10% growth in capital.

I believe our continuing success as investors is a direct result of having and following a portfolio business plan that sets out specific guidelines for buying, selling and on occasion trimming portfolio positions. Our plan, recently revised and available here, was developed after first defining our retirement income requirements and our personal risk profile. It defines our principal investment goals and sets out the clear performance benchmarks upon which success will be measured.

What follows is the final quarterly review for 2014. We conduct a review at the end of each quarter as required by our plan. It remains exciting to experience firsthand each quarter the direct results of strong consistent dividend growth. We continue to find that applying a key metric — Total Dividend Return, referred to by many as the chowder rule, at the time of purchase has proven instrumental in our success.

As risk-averse investors, we sought to construct and maintain a low beta portfolio. Our overall portfolio beta remains under .70 as required by our plan. It is currently registered at .66.

During the past three quarters you have witnessed our renewed emphasis on dividend growth and dividend quality. We have increased the number of holdings with investment grade credit of BBB or higher and strong dividend growth. Only six holdings in this portfolio now fail to have investment grade credit. 30 have credit ranking of BBB+ recommended by Lowell Miller and providing yet another important margin of safety for retired investors.

There was the first ever dividend elimination among our holdings this quarter when SeaDrill (NYSE:SDRL) announced they would be suspending the payment of their dividend. Many will remember that my portfolio business plan requires that I consider selling in the case of dividend cut. Note it includes the word consider. I often prefer to use a bench or probation system, so to speak, to help me make decisions based less on emotion.

SeaDrills elimination quite frankly caught me by surprise. I decided to sell both Seadrill and Ensco (NYSE:ESV) after the announcement. Two weeks later I decided to sell two additional positions that had been previously benched, Vanguard Resources (NASDAQ:VNR) and Triangle Capital (NYSE:TCAP). Both had continued to experience price reduction since being benched early in the quarter. Rather than wait until January, I decided to act before the end of the year due to what I felt was the likelihood of further price drops.

Each of the above four positions were sold at a loss. Total losses were equal to roughly 2.3% of the total portfolio value. I believe it was important to understand that at the time those decisions were made that money was already gone.

What I learned from this experience was the unique nature of each position I had purchased. From required 10-year back testing I knew that SDRL, ESV and VNR had experienced much greater than market losses in 2008. I had purchased each because of a combination of strong dividend growth and high yield.

I failed to consider credit ratings at the time of purchase. Only ESV contained a credit rating I now require for the purchase of a new position. I purchased TCAP because at the time of purchase it was the only CCC listed BDC. TCAP had experienced a difficult year and also lacked investment grade credit. I decided that since I wouldnt purchase it today it would represent a gamble to simply hold on in hopes of avoiding selling at a loss.

One new purchase, British Petroleum (NYSE:BP), was made this quarter just prior to the end of the year. This position currently represents 1% of my portfolio. I have made a number of small purchases following each major pullback.

I expect our income to pull back as a result of the elimination of the four low conviction holdings and the exchange of Kinder Morgan Partners (NYSE:KMP) shares for lower yielding Kinder Morgan Inc. (NYSE:KMI).

I am setting a goal of 6% growth of income for this year with the understanding that it may not be achieved. Ill know more about the total effects of these actions on income in the next few months and will report during upcoming reports.

Below are the current holdings making up my portfolio. Most were purchased at fair value or better between 2011 and today. I have included Credit Ratings for each holding. On further review you will find a number of the above are not currently available at fair value. Please do you own due diligence. Those of you building portfolios may also wish to consider some of the additional holdings which I call my Dividend Safety Superstars. That series begins here.

Free Consultation Available from an Experience Bankruptcy Attorney in …

(Forimmediaterelease.net) Get the help of an experienced professional and book an appointment with a reputable and experienced bankruptcy attorney in Pittsburgh, PA. The Law Office of Janice Q. Russell specializes in consumer bankruptcy.

No one should move through the territory of filing for bankruptcy without the help of a qualified professional with the ability to aid the process. The Law Office of Janice Q. Russell, Esq. offers free consultations to prospective clients. This noted bankruptcy attorney can help determine if filing for bankruptcy is the correct route for a potential client.

May changes to bankruptcy law in Pittsburgh, PA, went into effect in the year 2005 so what was true in the past may not be so now. Janice Q. Russell stays current and educated in the field of bankruptcy law to guarantee her clients get the best financial advantage for the client. The two types of consumer filings are Chapter 13 and Chapter 7 bankruptcy. Overall, the attorney works to protect every client’s rights no matter which legal route is the best for a specific situation.

As a leading bankruptcy law firm in Pittsburgh, The Law Office of Janice Q. Russell hopes to relieve clients from the burden of debt. During a free consultation, the two types of consumer bankruptcy will be discussed.

The main differences are:

Chapter 13 lasts up to five years and is a repayment plan that relieves a debt.
Chapter 7 is closed quickly and leaves the debt-holder free of debt but requires an extensive debt test.

A recent review of The Law Office of Janice Q. Russell states, “I was really impressed with the time and attention Janice gave me in my desperate situation. Her knowledge and friendliness were much better than anyone else I had contacted. I will use her again if I need to.”

Book a free consultation today with the experienced attorney at The Law Office of Janice Q. Russell. Esq. to determine if bankruptcy is the right option for a specific financial situation.

To learn more visit their website at www.attorneyspittsburghpa.com/ or call (412) 440-7824.

Company Name: The Law Office of Janice Q. Russell, Esq.
Contact Person: Janice Russell
Email: Janiceqrussell@yahoo.com
Phone: (412) 577-4007
Address:301 Grant Street, Suite 4300
City: Pittsburgh
State: PA
Country: United States
Website: www.attorneyspittsburghpa.com

Moody’s assigns ratings to two classes of notes issued by Madison Park Funding …

New York, December 29, 2014 — Moodys Investors Service (Moodys) has assigned ratings to two classes
of notes issued by Madison Park Funding XV, Ltd. (the Issuer
or Madison Park Funding XV).

Moodys rating action is as follows:

US$413,200,000 Class A-1 Senior
Secured Floating Rate Notes due January 2026 (the Class A-1 Notes),
Definitive Rating Assigned Aaa (sf)

US$40,000,000 Class D Senior Secured
Deferrable Floating Rate Notes due January 2026 (the Class D Notes),
Definitive Rating Assigned Ba3 (sf)

The Class A-1 Notes and the Class D Notes are referred to herein,
together, as the Rated Notes.

RATINGS RATIONALE

Moodys ratings of the Rated Notes address the expected losses posed to
noteholders. The ratings reflect the risks due to defaults on the
underlying portfolio of assets, the transactions legal structure,
and the characteristics of the underlying assets.

Madison Park Funding XV is a managed cash flow CLO. The issued
notes will be collateralized primarily by broadly syndicated first lien
senior secured corporate loans. At least 92.5% of
the portfolio must consist of senior secured loans, cash,
and eligible investments, and up to 7.5% of the portfolio
may consist of second lien loans and senior unsecured loans. The
portfolio is approximately 90% ramped as of the closing date.

Credit Suisse Asset Management, LLC (the Manager) will direct
the selection, acquisition and disposition of the assets on behalf
of the Issuer and may engage in trading activity, including discretionary
trading, during the transactions four year reinvestment period.
Thereafter, the Manager may reinvest unscheduled principal payments
and proceeds from sales of credit risk assets, subject to certain
restrictions.

In addition to the Rated Notes, the Issuer has issued five classes
of notes, including subordinated notes. The Issuer and Co-Issuer
have also issued six classes of funding notes, each of which has
been issued in connection with each class of notes (other than the subordinated
notes) and may be used to fund re-pricing redemptions and refinancings
of the related class of notes. Moodys is not assigning ratings
to the funding notes.

The transaction incorporates interest and par coverage tests which,
if triggered, divert interest and principal proceeds to pay down
the notes in order of seniority.

Moodys modeled the transaction using a cash flow model based on the Binomial
Expansion Technique, as described in Section 2.3.2.1
of the Moodys Global Approach to Rating Collateralized Loan Obligations
rating methodology published in February 2014.

For modeling purposes, Moodys used the following base-case
assumptions:

Par amount: $675,000,000

Diversity Score: 57

Weighted Average Rating Factor (WARF): 2775

Weighted Average Spread (WAS): 3.75%

Weighted Average Coupon (WAC): 7.00%

Weighted Average Recovery Rate (WARR): 44.0%

Weighted Average Life (WAL): 8 years

Methodology Underlying the Rating Action

The principal methodology used in this rating was Moodys Global Approach
to Rating Collateralized Loan Obligations published in February 2014.
Please see the Credit Policy page on www.moodys.com for
a copy of this methodology.

Factors That Would Lead to an Upgrade or Downgrade of the Rating:

The performance of the Rated Notes is subject to uncertainty. The
performance of the Rated Notes is sensitive to the performance of the
underlying portfolio, which in turn depends on economic and credit
conditions that may change. The Managers investment decisions
and management of the transaction will also affect the performance of
the Rated Notes.

Together with the set of modeling assumptions above, Moodys conducted
an additional sensitivity analysis, which was an important component
in determining the ratings assigned to the Rated Notes. This sensitivity
analysis includes increased default probability relative to the base case.

Below is a summary of the impact of an increase in default probability
(expressed in terms of WARF level) on the Rated Notes (shown in terms
of the number of notch difference versus the current model output,
whereby a negative difference corresponds to higher expected losses),
assuming that all other factors are held equal:

Percentage Change in WARF — increase of 15% (from
2775 to 3191)

Rating Impact in Rating Notches

Class A-1 Notes: 0

Class D Notes: -1

Percentage Change in WARF — increase of 30% (from
2775 to 3608)

Rating Impact in Rating Notches

Class A-1 Notes: -1

Class D Notes: -1

Further details regarding Moodys analysis of this transaction may be
found in the related pre-sale report, available on Moodys.com.

REGULATORY DISCLOSURES

For further specification of Moodys key rating assumptions and sensitivity
analysis, see the sections Methodology Assumptions and Sensitivity
to Assumptions of the disclosure form.

Moodys did not receive or take into account a third-party
assessment on the due diligence performed regarding the underlying assets
or financial instruments in this transaction.

Further information on the representations and warranties and enforcement
mechanisms available to investors are available on http://www.moodys.com/viewresearchdoc.aspx?docid=PBS_SF390716

The analysis relies on an assessment of collateral characteristics to
determine the collateral loss distribution, that is, the function
that correlates to an assumption about the likelihood of occurrence to
each level of possible losses in the collateral. As a second step,
Moodys evaluates each possible collateral loss scenario using a
model that replicates the relevant structural features to derive payments
and therefore the ultimate potential losses for each rated instrument.
The loss a rated instrument incurs in each collateral loss scenario,
weighted by assumptions about the likelihood of events in that scenario
occurring, results in the expected loss of the rated instrument.

Moodys quantitative analysis entails an evaluation of scenarios
that stress factors contributing to sensitivity of ratings and take into
account the likelihood of severe collateral losses or impaired cash flows.
Moodys weights the impact on the rated instruments based on its
assumptions of the likelihood of the events in such scenarios occurring.

For ratings issued on a program, series or category/class of debt,
this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation
to each rating of a subsequently issued bond or note of the same series
or category/class of debt or pursuant to a program for which the ratings
are derived exclusively from existing ratings in accordance with Moodys
rating practices. For ratings issued on a support provider,
this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation
to the rating action on the support provider and in relation to each particular
rating action for securities that derive their credit ratings from the
support providers credit rating. For provisional ratings,
this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation
to the provisional rating assigned, and in relation to a definitive
rating that may be assigned subsequent to the final issuance of the debt,
in each case where the transaction structure and terms have not changed
prior to the assignment of the definitive rating in a manner that would
have affected the rating. For further information please see the
ratings tab on the issuer/entity page for the respective issuer on www.moodys.com.

For any affected securities or rated entities receiving direct credit
support from the primary entity(ies) of this rating action, and
whose ratings may change as a result of this rating action, the
associated regulatory disclosures will be those of the guarantor entity.
Exceptions to this approach exist for the following disclosures,
if applicable to jurisdiction: Ancillary Services, Disclosure
to rated entity, Disclosure from rated entity.

Regulatory disclosures contained in this press release apply to the credit
rating and, if applicable, the related rating outlook or rating
review.

Please see www.moodys.com for any updates on changes to
the lead rating analyst and to the Moodys legal entity that has issued
the rating.

Please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com
for additional regulatory disclosures for each credit rating.

Sange Lama
Asst Vice President – Analyst
Structured Finance Group
Moodys Investors Service, Inc.
250 Greenwich Street
New York, NY 10007
USA.
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

Danielle Nazarian
Senior Vice President
Structured Finance Group
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

Releasing Office:
Moodys Investors Service, Inc.
250 Greenwich Street
New York, NY 10007
USA.
JOURNALISTS: 212-553-0376
SUBSCRIBERS: 212-553-1653

Munster schools to cut staff as money woes continue

MUNSTER | School Town of Munster Superintendent Jeff Hendrix said reduced tax collections in December shorted the district about $2.22 million of the money it expected to receive, and its going to mean some staff cuts.

Thats in addition to the $8 million deficit the district has been struggling with for the past few years.

When the School Board met Monday, officials said they are faced with reducing staff. Hendrix said reductions will begin with non-certified staff members.

I worked with my administrative team from the central office and the building level to identify where we could make reductions without having a major impact upon the classroom, he said. We do concede that any reduction of personnel will have an impact on our school corporation. We are all very saddened about having to reduce our staff members.

He said, due to contracts and state law, notification of reductions wont start until May 1.

The Munster Teachers Association leadership learned of the situation in a meeting with school administrators Friday, MTA President Ryan Ridgley said.

While teaching and administrative positions that are under contract cannot be cut at this time, depending on the outcome of the state budget and funding formula, we may have to RIF (reduction-in-force) teachers at the end of the year, Ridgley said. Right now, they are looking at making cuts to support staff, energy usage and anything else that can possibly be cut.

The tax collection problem was learned Dec. 30 when the district received its final property tax disbursement for 2014. Historically, the district has a collection rate of 96 percent to 98 percent, even with corrections and refunds, Hendrix said.

However, Hendrix said a number of people appealed property taxes and Lake County settled those appeals, some dating back nearly 10 years. There were also residents and businesses that didnt pay taxes at all. That caused the district to collect about 44 percent of the taxes it would normally receive, creating a shortage of $2.22 million.

This was done with no warning from Lake County, he said. The same impact occurred across all municipal bodies in Munster, as well as other cities and towns in the county.

He said the shortage was catastrophic for the district, and it was unable to meet its obligations. American Community Bank of Indiana and Munster Civic Foundation issued an emergency loan to help pay for a $1.76 million bond due in early January, Hendrix said.

We will repay those entities when we receive an advance on our referendum levy in February, he said.

Hendrix also said the district has explored cost-reduction and revenue-generating options, conventional and unconventional, to make up this deficit quickly.

Along with the staff reductions and energy efficiency measures, it will consider selling property in the Westlake subdivision and consolidating debt.

The School Town of Munster passed a general fund referendum in May 2013, generating $21 million over the next seven years. 

Hendrix has said the root of the problem is the school funding formula. He  said high-performing districts like Munster receive less than the state average of about $5,800 per pupil.

Districts get a basic amount called the foundation base. Added to that is a complexity index, which is based on the percentage of students receiving free and reduced-cost lunch. School districts like Munster dont have a large number of students on free and reduced-cost lunch, and therefore dont receive as much money for the complexity index.

Hendrix said the Indiana Legislature has to increase the foundation base to help high-performing districts.

Moody’s assigns a Caa2 CFR to Novartex; negative outlook

London, 20 January 2015 — Moodys Investors Service has today assigned a first-time corporate
family rating (CFR) of Caa2 and probability of default rating (PDR) of
Caa2-PD to Novartex. Concurrently, Moodys has assigned
a B3 rating to the EUR500 million Senior Bonds maturing in October 2019
(the New Money Bond) issued by Vivarte and a Caa3 rating to the EUR780
million reinstated debt maturing in October 2020 (the Reinstated Debt)
issued by Novarte, both subsidiaries of Novartex. The outlook
is negative.

On March 2014, Novartex entered into a financial restructuring after
having defaulted on the debt backing Charterhouses leveraged buy-out
in 2007. The restructuring, which closed in October 2014,
resulted in a EUR2 billion debt write-off leaving EUR780 million
of Reinstated Debt. In addition, lenders injected EUR500
million of cash into Vivarte through the New Money Bond whose proceeds
will be mainly used to fund the companys material capex requirements.

RATINGS RATIONALE

Novartexs Caa2 CFR reflects the companys (i) continued
loss of revenues and profitability over the last four years, resulting
in the companys weak positioning within the rating category (ii),
high execution risk related to its turnaround strategy, (iii) exposure
to the increasingly competitive French footwear and apparel markets,
with a weak position in the online market, (iv) negative free cash
flow projected over the next three years owing to substantial capex spending
and (v) its very high adjusted leverage ratio with limited deleveraging
potential over the rating horizon, says Sebastien Cieniewski,
Moodys lead analyst for Novartex. More positively,
the rating also reflects the companys (i) leading position within
the French footwear and apparel markets, (ii) its sizeable store
and distribution networks, and (iii) its available cash position
at the closing of the restructuring.

Novartexs rating will remain constrained by the companys
high geographical concentration in France (representing 89% of
fiscal year (FY) 2014 revenues) where the value of the apparel and the
footwear markets has contracted and competition intensified as a result
of the entry of large international player and an increased penetration
of the online distribution channel where Novartex suffered delays in developing
a competitive offer.

In a context of intensifying competition, a series of decisions
affecting primarily La Halle banner (approximately 40% of revenues)
and involving above competitor price increases and desertion of entry
price territory led to a depositioning of the brand from its initial anchor
in the mass market segment. This contributed to a decrease of Novartexs
revenues at a 6% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) over the period
FY2011 to FY2014 with like-for-like (LfL) sales consistently
behind total revenue growth.

Despite the negative operating performance, Moodys recognises
that Novartex still enjoys leading positions in the French footwear and
apparel markets with shares of 16% and 4.5%,
respectively. The company benefits from a large retail network
of over 4,310 points of sales well distributed across the French
territory.

Novartex turnaround strategy lies in a vast store refurbishment and store
reshuffling plan towards higher traffic areas. While the company
has historically channelled capital expenditure towards the expansion
of its retail network, a large portion of existing network has been
neglected leading to close to 60% of its stores not having received
substantial maintenance capex over the last 5 years as of FY2013.
Budgeted at over EUR600 million over the next three years, this
ambitious capex plan will put significant pressure on the companys
free cash flow which we expect to remain negative over this period and
will be largely financed by the funds raised with the New Money Bond.

Moodys estimates Novartexs adjusted gross Debt-to-EBITDA
ratio at 13.8x (adjusted mainly for operating lease commitments
and impacted by other non-recurring charges) as of 30 November
2014. In its ratio calculation, Moodys treats the
companys EUR800 million bonds redeemable into preferred B shares
(non reinstated debt) and EUR2.5 million shareholder loan issued
by Novartex as debt as they do not meet the rating agencys published
criteria to assign equity treatment to shareholders funding.
The non-reinstated debt and the shareholder loan have an impact
of 2.3 turns on leverage as of November 2014. Moodys
expects limited de-leveraging over the next three years based on
the gradual roll-out of the capex plan over the period, the
restructuring charges related to this plan, and the prospects of
continued challenging macro-economic and competitive environments.

Moodys considers that Novartex benefits from sufficient liquidity
for the execution of its plan over the next 18 months. Liquidity
is supported by EUR578 million of cash as of end of November 2014.
Moodys expects that this cash balance should be sufficient to withstand
seasonal fluctuations in working capital and fund the companys
ambitious capex plan which is scalable at the discretion of the company.
Under the terms and conditions of the New Money Bond, Novartex is
subject to financial covenants in the form of (1) a maximum annual capital
expenditures test, (2) a minimum EBITDA test starting on 28 February
2016, and (3) a minimum liquidity test to be tested quarterly.
Under the terms of the Reinstated Debt Facility Agreement, Vivarte
will benefit from a covenant holiday up until November 2016.

Novartexs Caa2-PD PDR, reflects the companys
mix of senior and subordinated debt instruments. It reflects a
moderate risk of default in the near term owing to the cash position and
the covenant holiday but a high risk of debt restructuring in the medium
term if the management is not fully successful in the turn-around.
The EUR780 reinstated debt, rated Caa3, one notch below the
CFR, is ranking above the non reinstated debt and shareholder loan,
but is structurally and contractually subordinated to the EUR500 million
New Money Bond, rated B3. Neither the New Money Bond nor
the Reinstated Debt are guaranteed by the operating subsidiaries,
however, the New Money Bond benefits from a pledge over receivables
related to inter-company loans down-streamed to the operating
subsidiaries. At the operating companies level, these intercompany
loans rank pari passu with the other operating liabilities, except
for EUR150 million of trade payable, which are guaranteed by letters
of credit, ranking ahead.

The negative outlook on the ratings reflects (1) the distraction of Novartexs
management from the operating execution due to the focus on the financial
restructuring, which has resulted in delays in the implementation
of the turnaround plan; (2) the significant challenge for the company
to regain market shares in a very competitive environment; and (3)
Moodys view that the turnaround plan will take time to bear fruit
due to the scale of capex to be deployed and will encompass significant
execution risk. It also reflects the risk that EBITDA might not
grow to the level required to comply with covenants at the end of the
holiday period.

WHAT COULD CHANGE THE RATING UP/DOWN

While unlikely in the short-term, the negative outlook on
Novartexs ratings could be stabilised if (1) the company shows
a track record of positive reported and like-for-like sales
growth leading to EBITDA (as reported by the company) generation above
covenant requirements, and (2) maintains an adequate liquidity position.
Negative pressure could arise if Novartex fails to grow its sales over
the next 12 months. Moodys also notes that the non-cash
interests will contribute to an increase in debt which will constrain
any deleveraging over the next few years.

PRINCIPAL METHODOLOGIES

The principal methodology used in these ratings was Global Retail Industry
published in June 2011. Other methodologies used include Loss Given
Default for Speculative-Grade Non-Financial Companies in
the US, Canada and EMEA published in June 2009.
Please see the Credit Policy page on www.moodys.com for
a copy of these methodologies.

Vivarte is a France-based footwear and apparel retailer focusing
on the branded and mass market segments.
Vivarte operates a portfolio of sixteen names including La Halle aux Chaussures,
Andre, Minelli and San Marina in the footwear division and
La Halle aux Vecirc;tements, Caroll, Naf-Naf,
Kookaiuml; and Chevignon in the apparel division. In fiscal year
2014, the company generated revenues of 2,685 million and
EBITDA of EUR170 million (corresponding to EUR445 on a Moodys adjusted
basis, primarily after capitalisation of operating leases).

REGULATORY DISCLOSURES

For ratings issued on a program, series or category/class of debt,
this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation
to each rating of a subsequently issued bond or note of the same series
or category/class of debt or pursuant to a program for which the ratings
are derived exclusively from existing ratings in accordance with Moodys
rating practices. For ratings issued on a support provider,
this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation
to the rating action on the support provider and in relation to each particular
rating action for securities that derive their credit ratings from the
support providers credit rating. For provisional ratings,
this announcement provides certain regulatory disclosures in relation
to the provisional rating assigned, and in relation to a definitive
rating that may be assigned subsequent to the final issuance of the debt,
in each case where the transaction structure and terms have not changed
prior to the assignment of the definitive rating in a manner that would
have affected the rating. For further information please see the
ratings tab on the issuer/entity page for the respective issuer on www.moodys.com.

For any affected securities or rated entities receiving direct credit
support from the primary entity(ies) of this rating action, and
whose ratings may change as a result of this rating action, the
associated regulatory disclosures will be those of the guarantor entity.
Exceptions to this approach exist for the following disclosures,
if applicable to jurisdiction: Ancillary Services, Disclosure
to rated entity, Disclosure from rated entity.

Regulatory disclosures contained in this press release apply to the credit
rating and, if applicable, the related rating outlook or rating
review.

Please see www.moodys.com for any updates on changes to
the lead rating analyst and to the Moodys legal entity that has issued
the rating.

Please see the ratings tab on the issuer/entity page on www.moodys.com
for additional regulatory disclosures for each credit rating.

Sebastien Cieniewski
Vice President – Senior Analyst
Corporate Finance Group
Moodys Investors Service Ltd.
One Canada Square
Canary Wharf
London E14 5FA
United Kingdom
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Peter Firth
Associate Managing Director
Corporate Finance Group
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Releasing Office:
Moodys Investors Service Ltd.
One Canada Square
Canary Wharf
London E14 5FA
United Kingdom
JOURNALISTS: 44 20 7772 5456
SUBSCRIBERS: 44 20 7772 5454

Money, Marriage and Divorce: it’s all there

MONEY is always a tricky subject to broach, especially when you#39;ve just found the love of your life.

Paul Clitheroe, best-selling author of Making Money and Free Yourself From Debt, has put together a practical and accessible guide, Money, Marriage and Divorce, to help you manage wealth at any stage of a relationship.

Paul has advice both for those in a de facto relationship as well as those who have tied the knot.

He tackles topics such as setting up household budgets, dividing money chores, investing together, consolidating debt, buying a property together and knowing financially where you stand overall as a couple.

The next part of the guide looks at the financial issues associated with couples who decide to go their own separate ways.

Paul discusses what to expect from separation and divorce, the costs and processes of divorce and living separately, how to divide assets including superannuation, to sell or retain your family home, settlement options, child support and estate planning.

Once you#39;re on the other side of divorce, Paul then provides financial advice on starting over for a bright future. He touches on key topics such as financial planning, budgeting for your changed circumstances, reviewing insurances and rebuilding retirement savings.

Overall, he looks at making the most of the money you have, and how best to manage it, as you embark on this new stage of your life – including if and when you meet a new partner.

Money, Marriage and Divorce is published by Penguin, RRP $19.99.

DID YOU KNOW?

Paul is married with three children and lives in Sydney.

He is a keen golfer and sailor, and enjoys offshore racing, including skippering the Sydney Hobart five times in his yacht #39;Balance#39;.

In 2011 he climbed Mt Kilimanjaro with some uni friends and in 2013 tackled it again with his wife.

Joy Earls: Stay focused when buying or selling home

Happy New Years! If you are thinking of buying or selling a home this year you really should read this.

Buying a home is a personal time. A young couple may be choosing the first place they will share as a duo. A growing family may be moving into a bigger home to accommodate a newborn. And an aging couple may decide it is time to sell and find a less demanding house.

People choose to sell their homes and buy others for various reasons that only matter to themselves. Then why do buyers ask why sellers are selling? Why do sellers need to know about the future occupants of their home?

When it comes time to move, sellers and buyers must be coached that the process of selling is a business deal. Personalities and personal issues have ruined many real estate transactions that could have reached perfect conclusions. Instead, the parties involved wasted time, money and stress thinking about irrelevant things out of their control. They learned the hard way not to mix business with nosiness. Sellers end up selling their homes for less and buyers miss out on homes they really want.

The key to a real estate transaction is focus. Just as in sports, keep your eye on the ball and forget about the outside noise and distractions.

A motivated seller is a person who is ready to move on to another living arrangement. They need to know what their home will sell for in the current market and how long it may take. Some people are right on track. They paint, clean and pack up their home, staging it for a quick sale. Then the day comes when an offer to purchase arrives. There is rejoicing until they see the amount offered is way below asking price. At this point the sellers may get angry and take it personally. On several occasions, I have seen sellers Google buyers to learn a little bit about them. They usually aren’t speaking with the buyers at that point, so the mounting anger is with themselves and maybe their real estate agents.

While reading this, it’s easy to see the mistake. It doesn’t really matter who the buyers are. There may not be a second chance to realize that it isn’t about the people, but it’s a business deal. Keeping a level head can be tough.

Buyers and sellers get hung up on details that don’t matter. They start thinking about the transaction in terms of who is winning and who is losing.

Many years ago, I worked with a gal I’ll call Sarah. She owned a historic home that was beautifully restored. Sarah hadn’t lived there for more than five years, but she took great pride in her home. When she decided to sell for personal reasons, Sarah wished for a new owner to preserve and enjoy the house as she did. Upon listing her home, two buyers came forward to make offers, one substantially higher than the other. The lower offer was from a younger couple that expressed a desire to raise their family there and occupy it for the long term. The higher offer, more desirable both monetarily and in terms of easily closing, came from a person she didn’t know anything about. Sarah sold it to the younger couple, who very quickly sold the home again for a tidy profit. I probably don’t need to say more about this story and Sarah’s comments that need not be printed.

Most of the time, when you are ready to sell a home, a property or a business, move forward. Don’t get bogged down in trying to understand buyers. Selling a home is enough work. Don’t worry about people you will probably never know or understand.

On a lighter note, after trying hard to get the idea across of keeping emotions at bay, sometimes interjecting personal issues can help. Once I was negotiating for a seller who truly wished to sell. And the buyers loved the home, but the purchase price could not be reached. Along with the stress of negotiations, the seller was concerned about his pet. He had a cat that took pride in mouse maintenance and was sure his cat wouldn’t move easily. Finally, he said if the buyers would let the cat keep his home, he would agree to the deal. It was something that really mattered to him, that was personal and that made the final agreement happen.

Sometimes it’s the smaller issues that can make a difference. Leave that load of firewood, share expenses cleaning up the yard, repair the broken fence and scrub the house spick and span. Don’t get petty, if you give a bit the entire deal will go much smoother and you will be on your way.

Some of the keys to helping move real estate deals forward may sound a little like New Year’s resolutions. And perhaps they are. Keep an eye on the important issues. Selling a home is a business deal that can help you achieve the next goals in your life. Don’t try to interpret other people’s motives. Give a little or a lot, if it makes you feel better. But don’t get hung up on details that really don’t matter.

Joy Earls is broker/owner of Joy Earls Real Estate. She can be reached at 531-9811 or joyearls@joyearls.com.