Aston Martin’s Stroll wants to pay off automaker’s debt
Aston Martin chairman Lawrence Stroll has overseen a major turnaround at the sports car maker and his next goal is to figure out how to speed up the process of hand-building what he calls the most complex car ever. time and repay the debt.
The Canadian billionaire who came to the rescue of the iconic British company at the start of 2020, spoke to reporters on Thursday ahead of the unveiling of the AMR22, Aston Martin’s Formula 1 car for the coming season .
Stroll spoke of the automaker’s progress in reducing inventory and improving its cash position, which he said should help lower interest costs in the coming years.
“I will renegotiate the bonds at a more favorable rate, probably, and take money to pay off” some of the debt, Stroll said. “This business will be cash flow positive in 2023.”
As well as injecting much-needed cash, Stroll has forged closer ties with Mercedes-Benz to put Aston Martin on firmer footing amid the pandemic.
In mid-2020, he hired Tobias Moers, who previously ran Mercedes’ AMG performance car business, as CEO.
Aston Martin had net debt of 809 million pounds ($1.1 billion) at the end of the third quarter and expects interest charges of 165 million pounds in 2021, it said in November.
A year ago, the company raised $98.5 million in senior secured notes due 2025 with a coupon of 10.5%. These notes come with four-year call protection, which means refinancing senior debt will incur a penalty.
Aston Martin could buy back some of the more expensive mezzanine bonds once the company generates cash, Stroll said, ruling out the need for any further fundraising.
“We don’t need the money at all anymore,” he said. “Let me be clear, black on white: we don’t need the money.”