AMD looks to raise $2.2 billion through debt sale

AMD hopes to raise up to $2.2 billion through the sale of convertible notes.

Less than one week after disclosing a $US611 million first-quarter loss, chipmaker, AMD said it hoped to raise up to $US2.2 billion through the sale of convertible notes to institutional investors.

AMD will offer an initial $US1.8 billion in convertible notes and will offer buyers an option to purchase an additional $US400 million in notes. The company plans to negotiate the interest rate and other terms of the notes with the purchasers.

At least $US500 million from the funds raised through this offering will be used to pay back part of a loan from Morgan Stanley Senior Fundin for AMD's acquisition of ATI Technologies. The remainder of the funds would be used for general corporate expenses, including capital expenditures, AMD said.

AMD has taken a financial beating in recent months. The company reported a first quarter loss of $US611 million -- more than double what analysts expected to see -- on revenue of $US1.23 billion. And the outlook for the current quarter is not encouraging: AMD last week predicted its second-quarter revenue will be flat to slightly up.

At the same time, AMD reported its cash position at the end of the first quarter on March 31 was $US1.17 billion.

The notes offering will greatly increase the amount of long-term debt that AMD holds. The company could see its debt rise from $US3.7 billion at the end of the first quarter to $US5.4 billion, if the offering is successful and purchasers exercise the option to buy additional notes.

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Sumner Lemon

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