Vancouver, B.C. July 26, 2016 – GLG Life Tech Corporation (TSX: GLG) (“GLG” or the “Company”), a global and agricultural leader in the natural zero-calorie sweetener industry, committed to the sustainable development of high-quality zero-calorie natural sweeteners, is pleased to announce an important milestone in the Company’s plan to restructure its China-based bank loans. Additionally, the Company successfully renewed a RMB 7 million bank loan with the Huishang Bank on July 1, 2016.
As of July 20th, 2016, four of five of the Company’s 100% owned Chinese Wholly-Owned Foreign Enterprises (“WOFEs”) were consolidated into a single entity (Chuzhou Runhai Stevia High Tech Company Limited or “Runhai”) under Chinese law – and, significantly, Runhai is approved to become a Joint Stock Company (“JSC”). This form of corporation, under Chinese law, enables it considerable opportunities to raise capital. For example, Runhai will now be able to add Chinese investors, raise equity capital in China, and convert China-based debt into equity in the JSC. Post consolidation of the four China subsidiaries, the Company retains its 100% ownership of Runhai and all of the consolidated assets of the previous four China subsidiaries.
The three subsidiaries consolidated into Runhai are:
Anhui Bengbu HN Stevia High Tech Development Company Limited (“Bengbu”)
Qingdao Runhao Stevia High Tech Company Limited (“Runhao”)
Dongtai Runyang Stevia High Tech Company Limited (“Runyang”)
One of the key outcomes of the conversion of Runhai into a JSC was the underlying agreed valuation of the consolidated Runhai entity. Runhai’s total investment approval by the China Government is USD 120 million and its net assets are valued at USD 42 million. The difference between the asset valuation and net assets value provides Runhai USD 78 million available for debt conversion, additional working capital or equity raises.
GLG’s subsidiary Qingdao Runde Biotechnology Co., Ltd. remains a 100% owned WOFE of GLG.
One particular benefit of reforming the Company’s Chinese holdings into a JSC is that the limitations previously foreclosing the Company from access to Chinese debt and capital markets are gone. As a JSC, Runhai will be eligible to have its Chinese-held debt converted into equity shares at the subsidiary level, such that a major portion of that debt could be removed from the Company’s balance sheet. GLG, with the PRC government’s support, is in active discussions with Runhai’s Chinese debt-holders to negotiate terms for a debt-equity swap, and is exploring multiple options for access to valuable working capital. The Company expects to retain a majority controlling interest in Runhai after any expected debt conversion into equity in Runhai. Further, Runhai will have the ability to solicit Chinese capital markets and investors for working and other capital, bolstered by a more attractive balance sheet and a strong appetite in China for growth opportunities.
The process to convert the four WOFEs into a single consolidated Joint Stock Company was unusually complex. To give perspective on this major accomplishment, GLG management had to work through ten different government agencies across three provinces and four cities in order to obtain the relevant approvals necessary to accomplish this important milestone.
With this foundational milestone completed, GLG’s plan is to restructure its China debt by availing itself of one or more options now open to the Company. The Company also expects to gain access to new sources of working capital to facilitate its plans for substantial growth in its stevia, monk fruit, and GLG Naturals+ businesses.
For further information, please contact:
Simon Springett, Investor Relations
Phone: +1 (604) 285-2602 ext. 101
Fax: +1 (604) 285-2606
Email: [email protected]
Forward-looking statements: This press release may contain certain information that may constitute “forward-looking statements” and “forward looking information” (collectively, “forward-looking statements”) within the meaning of applicable securities laws. Often, but not always, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of words such as “plans”, “expects” or “does not expect”, “is expected”, “budget”, “scheduled”, “estimates”, “forecasts”, “intends”, “anticipates” or “does not anticipate”, or “believes” or variations of such words and phrases or words and phrases that state or indicate that certain actions, events or results “may”, “could”, “would”, “might” or “will” be taken, occur or be achieved.
While the Company has based these forward-looking statements on its current expectations about future events, the statements are not guarantees of the Company’s future performance and are subject to risks, uncertainties, assumptions and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from future results expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such factors include amongst others the effects of general economic conditions, consumer demand for our products and new orders from our customers and distributors, changing foreign exchange rates and actions by government authorities, uncertainties associated with legal proceedings and negotiations, industry supply levels, competitive pricing pressures and misjudgments in the course of preparing forward-looking statements. Specific reference is made to the risks set forth under the heading “Risk Factors” in the Company’s Annual Information Form for the financial year ended December 31, 2015. In light of these factors, the forwardlooking events discussed in this press release might not occur.
Further, although the Company has attempted to identify factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. The Company undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.