February 28, 2009

Extension granted in CanWest debt talks

The Canadian media group Canwest Global Communications Corp. says it has been given a short extension to negotiate new terms for a key line of credit.

With the potential for bankruptcy hanging overhead, Canwest said Friday the Bank of Nova Scotia has extended its negotiation deadline to March 11, The Globe and Mail reported in Toronto. The bank cut Canwest's credit line from $300 million to $112 million because of concerns about the company's $3.9 billion debt load.

CanWest had used nearly $92 million of the credit line before the restriction was implemented.

The media group has been suffering significant financial losses in both its newspaper and TV properties during the global recession.

The Globe and Mail said CanWest Chief Executive Officer Leonard Asper has been searching for investors or to sell non-core assets as he attempts to manage the company's debt and avoid having to resort to bankruptcy protection.