Mexico's Comerci pays down last of restructured debt

Thu Nov 22, 2012 10:08pm EST

* Comerci arranges 2.5 billion peso syndicated loan

* Shares close at record high

MONTERREY Nov 22 (Reuters) - Retailer Comercial Mexicana said on Thursday it had paid down the last of a restructured debt load that weighed on its growth with a 2.5 billion pesos ($192 million) syndicated loan.

Comerci has arranged a five-year loan with a group of banks, including Citigroup-unit Banamex and J.P. Morgan , that will help it lower its overall interest payments, the company said in a filing with the Mexican stock exchange.

Comerci defaulted on debt payments in 2008 after it suffered massive derivatives losses during the global financial crisis.

"Today we liquidated the total remaining balance of the restructured debt, which eliminates all the imposed restrictions on growth that was assumed with this debt," the company said, adding that all its current debt is denominated in pesos.

Comerci restructured 1.6 billion in debt in 2010 and in June sold its 50 percent stake in the local units of U.S. club warehouse operator Costco Wholesale Corp back to Costco for 10.7 billion pesos. Comerci used that cash to pay debt.

Comerci shares closed up 0.32 percent at a record high of 40.14 pesos on Thursday before the company's announcement.