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Report: Sycamore Partners to cut equity in Staples through debt sale

Sycamore Partners Management LP is planning to recoup about 66% of its $1.6 billion equity in the office supplies retail chain Staples Inc. through a recapitalization, Bloomberg News reported, citing people familiar with the matter.

The debt sale transaction will saddle Staples with about $1 billion of additional debt, the sources said. The private equity firm, which bought Staples in 2017, will still own approximately $600 million of equity in the company after the recapitalization.

Sycamore may exit the company in 2020 through an IPO, one of the sources said, adding that Staples looks to sell $3.2 billion of new term loans and more than $2 billion of other secured and unsecured debt.

The recapitalization and any IPO reportedly will boost Staples' debt pile to about $5.33 billion from approximately $4.25 billion.

The company is presenting the deal with adjusted EBITDA of approximately $1.2 billion, including expected cost savings from recent acquisitions, two of the sources said.

Sycamore will need to repurchase the debt Staples issued in 2017, according to two sources, as the covenants would have hindered a dividend of this size.

Representatives for Sycamore, UBS Group AG, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and the two banks working on the debt sale did not comment on the matter, according to Bloomberg.