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Barry Callebaut signs new revolving credit facility of EUR 850 million

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August 29, 2005

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  • New agreement extends maturities to 5/7 years
  • Provides the company with greater flexibility at improved terms
  • Offers a back-up facility to refinance the High-Yield Bond 2003-2010 at its first call date in March 2007 at much lower costs

Zurich, Switzerland, August 29, 2005 – Barry Callebaut AG, the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality cocoa and chocolate products, said today that it has signed the previously announced Revolving Credit Facility with a group of 15 banks. This facility replaces the EUR 575 million Term and Revolving Facility in place since March 2003 and July 2004, respectively. With EUR 850 million, the facility is EUR 110 million higher than initially planned, following the great response from the banking market. The company will cancel other financing arrangements to compensate for the increased amount. The facility was initially underwritten by ING, ABN AMRO, Fortis and Natexis Populaires and subsequently offered to the syndicated loan market.

The agreement consist of three parts:

  1. A Revolving Credit Facility of EUR 435 million with a minimal tenor of 5 and a maximum of 7 years
  2. A Revolving Credit Facility of EUR 250 million with a minimal tenor of 3 and a maximum of 5 years, serving as back-up for the company’s Commercial Paper program
  3. A Revolving Credit Facility of EUR 165 million with a minimal tenor of 5 and a maximum tenor of 7 years to refinance the High Yield Bond 2003-2010 as from March 2007. The cost reduction as from fiscal year 2007/08 will be approx. CHF 14 million p.a.

The margin of the new facility is linked to a rating grid and starts with an applicable margin of 82.5bps for the first period until November 2005. The commitment fee is 35% of the margin. However, as from December 2005 onwards, Barry Callebaut expects to benefit from a lower applicable margin of 65bps.

“The new agreement is a milestone in our commitment to strengthen our Balance Sheet and will greatly enhance our financial flexibility and security,” said Dieter Enkelmann, Barry Callebaut’s CFO. “The oversubscription of more than 50% of the facility based on terms typically found in the investment grade syndicated loan market is evidence of the confidence the financial community has in our operational performance and market position.”

The syndicate consists of ABN AMRO Bank NV (books), Fortis Bank NV (books), ING Belgium NV (books), Natexis Banques Populaires as Underwriters/MLA’s, KBC Bank NV, Lloyds TSB Bank plc, Coöperatieve Centrale Rabobank B.A. as MLA’s, BNP Paribas, Credit Suisse, Mizuho Corporate Bank Nederland NV as Lead Arrangers, Banque LBLux SA, NIB Capital Bank NV, Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation as Arrangers and Dexia Bank Belgium SA, The Royal Bank of Scotland plc as Co-arrangers.

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Barry Callebaut (www.barry-callebaut.com):

With annual sales of more than CHF 4 billion for fiscal year 2003/04, Zurich-based Barry Callebaut is the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality cocoa, chocolate and confectionery products – from the cocoa bean to the finished product on the store shelf. Barry Callebaut operates more than 30 production facilities in 22 countries and employs more than 8,000 people. The company serves the entire food industry, from food manufacturers to professional users of chocolate (such as chocolatiers, pastry chefs or bakers), to global retailers. It also provides a comprehensive range of services in the fields of product development, processing, training and marketing.

Fiscal year 2004/05 will close on August 31, 2005. Results for fiscal year 2004/05 will be published on November 10, 2005 (press conference and analysts’ conference).

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Contacts    
for investors and financial analysts:  
Dieter A. Enkelmann, CFO  
Barry Callebaut AG  
Phone: +41 43 204 04 20 
Fax:   +41 43 204 04 00 
dieter_enkelmann@barry-callebaut.com  


for the media:
Gaby Tschofen
Barry Callebaut AG
Phone:  +41 43 204 04 60
Fax:  +41 43 204 04 00
gaby_tschofen@barry-callebaut.com