Property & Building seeks to refinance HSBC Tower

JERUSALEM, April 29 Sun Apr 29, 2012 6:56am EDT

JERUSALEM, April 29 (Reuters) - Israeli real estate firm Property & Building said on Sunday it was in preliminary talks to refinance its borrowing on the HSBC Tower building in New York in the amount of $350-$400 million.

Property & Building is negotiating with several foreign banks, it said in a statement to the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange. The current financing on the Fifth Avenue building is about $240 million and the company believes a new agreement will generate cash flow of $100-$150 million.

Property & Building, a subsidiary of holding company IDB Group, also said it would post first-quarter net profit of 150 million to 190 million shekels ($40-$50.5 million), up from 22 million shekels a year earlier.

The company said it was considering a bond offering of up to 400 million shekels that would expand its series 3 and 4 bonds. Any issue is subject to its board's approval, it said.

Should an offering take place, Standard & Poor's Israel division Maalot said it would rate the bonds "A" with a negative outlook, while Moody's Israel affiliate Midroog said it would rate them "A1 stable".

Property & Building's shares were up 2.8 percent in afternoon trading in Tel Aviv. Its bond prices were down as much as 2.3 percent.

($1 = 3.76 shekels) (Reporting by Steven Scheer; Editing by Sophie Walker)

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