Advancing its strategic debt management plan, the Santee Cooper Board of Directors today approved approximately $622 million in a multi-part bond sale, which will refinance approximately $175 million in bonds due in 2023, and provide another $450 million for capital improvements for Santee Cooper’s system. The transaction was approved by the South Carolina Joint Bond Review Committee on Oct. 18, 2022.
Specifically, the Board approved:
- $36.6 million of 2022 Tax-Exempt Refunding Series C
- $134.9 million of 2022 Taxable Refunding Series D
- $390 million of 2022 Tax-Exempt Improvement Series E
- $60 million of 2022 Taxable Improvement Series F
The all-in true interest cost is 5.55%. The transaction is compliant with the parameters approved by the South Carolina Joint Bond Review Committee.
Demand for the offering was strong, with investor orders totaling just over $1.2 billion, which allowed Santee Cooper to reduce interest rates on several bond maturities and increase the par amount sold to fully fund expected new money capital needs for the next 18 to 24 months.
The transaction was led by J.P. Morgan Securities. Other senior managers were Bank of America Securities and Barclays Capital Inc. Co-managers included Goldman Sachs & Co. LLC, Morgan Stanley & Co. LLC, TD Securities (USA) LLC, Wells Fargo, and American Veterans Group, which is a certified Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business that reinvests a portion of their earnings into military veteran causes.
“This transaction is a key component of our overall financial strategy. The refunding portion allows us to continue to proactively manage our cash and liquidity needs during the rate freeze, while the capital improvement bonds are a very cost-effective way to invest in the Santee Cooper system as we continue to provide the high-level of reliability and service that our customers expect and, quite frankly, that they deserve,” said Santee Cooper President and CEO Jimmy Staton. “The smooth execution of this transaction is a testament to the transparency and trust that has been built between Santee Cooper and the Joint Bond Review Committee, and we certainly appreciate their guidance and the support they’ve demonstrated.”
PFM Managing Director Mike Mace added, “This was quite a success. We were able to sell more bonds and longer bonds than we what we were thinking at the outset. It’s an excellent transaction for the Authority.”
Santee Cooper is South Carolina’s largest power provider, the ultimate source of electricity for 2 million people across the state, and one of America’s Best Midsize Employers as named by Forbes. Through its low-cost, reliable, and environmentally responsible electricity and water services, and through innovative partnerships and initiatives that attract and retain industry and jobs, Santee Cooper helps power South Carolina. To learn more, visit www.santeecooper.com and follow #PoweringSC on social media.