KKR, Permira may extend loan to German net

ProSiebenSat1 faces long- and short-term debts of $5 bil

BERLIN -- The majority owners of European broadcasting group ProSiebenSat1 are prepared to float the company new loans to keep it out of fiscal trouble, according to an article published Monday by German newsweekly Der Spiegel.

The report claims private equity firms KKR and Permira, which control ProSiebenSat.1, are willing to offer the broadcaster new loans of up to $200 million if needed. Both KKR and Permira declined comment.

A spokesman for ProSiebenSat.1 would only say the group was talking to its owners about "optimizing" its capital structure. He added that there was currently no danger that ProSieben would default on its loans with other creditor banks.

As of Oct.1, 2009, ProSieben owed around $5 billion in various long- and short-term debt commitments.

A fresh line of credit would give ProSieben breathing space if the German ad market -- where the group earns the bulk of its revenues -- suddenly swings southward. But most forecasts suggest a mild recovery in 2010, so additional loans may be unnecessary.