FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Tara Perkins, AVP | 203-418-9049 | [email protected]
HJ Sims Advises Peoples of Bastrop on the Acquisition of a Private Water System via a Taxable Bond Issuance
FAIRFIELD, CT– HJ Sims (Sims), a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm founded in 1935, is pleased to announce the successful closing of a July 2021 financing in the amount of $10.635 million for Peoples of Bastrop, a privately held water utility operator (Sponsor) specializing in the acquisition and management of private water and wastewater systems reached an agreement to acquire a private system serving 6,000+ customers in North LA (System).
The Sponsor has demonstrated a strong track record of operating water utilities, reducing expenses through the implementation of streamlined operations and economies of scale, but was looking for an innovative approach to acquire an additional water system in their operational footprint.
Sims underwrote the taxable municipal bond issue in the amount of $10.635 million, which was used to purchase the System from the existing operator. Initially, the plan of finance was to take the offering to a limited potential buyer base, but positive market feedback lead to Sims opening the offering to the institutional bond market. To appeal to a broader investor base, and level annual debt service in aggregate, Sims structured one medium-term bond maturing in 2033 and a long-term bond maturing in 2051.
The Sponsor found the taxable bond structure attractive for the acquisition as it provided higher leverage compared to a conventional bank loan, helping avoid raising unsecured subordinate debt at a higher cost of capital or diluting ownership in the System. The bond issue was structured with working capital and system improvements funds, allowing the Sponsor to implement their planned improvements and make necessary upgrades.
The financing consisted of a $2.375 million, 12-year taxable bond at a yield of 5.364%, and a $8.26 million, 30-year taxable bond at a yield of 5.802% underwritten by Sims. The outside-of-the-box, customized financing structure helps the long-time operator preserve strategic capital for additional growth opportunities and for the support of other systems in their portfolio.
“Our company recently acquired a water utility in northeast LA. We were fortunate to engage Sims to underwrite a taxable municipal bond in the amount of $10.635 million used to purchase the system and fund multiple reserve accounts. Jimmy Rester and his team were extremely knowledgeable and brought the necessary experience to close a complex transaction. There is no question that Sims will be a valued partner on all future financing projects we endeavor to accomplish,” Jeff McNew, Co-Founder/Managing Member.
ABOUT HJ SIMS: Founded in 1935, HJ Sims is a privately held investment bank and wealth management firm. Headquartered in Fairfield, CT, Sims has nationwide investment banking, private wealth management and trading locations. Member FINRA, SIPC. Testimonials may not be representative of another client’s experience. Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram.