DIP financing approved for Ion


Ion Media Networks announced that the US Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York has given final approval to its $150 million of debtor-in-possession financing being provided by a majority of its first lien senior secured lenders.

There had been some dispute among creditors over terms of the DIP financing, after the TV network and station owners filed in May for Chapter 11 reorganization.
“After review of various funding proposals received in recent weeks, the Court approved the financing alternative determined by Ion as being in the best interest of the Company. The approved financing is being provided by a majority of Ion’s first lien lenders, with the opportunity of participation for all first lien holders. In total, holders of approximately 88% of outstanding first lien indebtedness affirmatively support or do not object to the approved financing,” the company said in a statement.

Ion noted that the terms approved by the bankruptcy court give it the right to convert this financing into equity at its election, as part of an overall financial plan for the company. The company said the financing is consistent with its plan for growing its TV network “through general audience appeal based on sustained investment in programming and digital technology.”

“The team has been working very hard and diligently on building the company and we are pleased about this vote of confidence from our stakeholders as well as from the court. Operationally, June was a new high for us in terms of audience ratings, and this funding will allow us to maintain momentum and provide full support for the launch of our fall programming season,” said Ion CEO Brandon Burgess.

The company also announced that it is in active discussions for the acquisition of further content for the 2009-2010 television season, including both off-network syndicated content and original productions.