Blackboard increases credit line for Edline merger/acquisition

Education software maker Blackboard Inc. has increased the size of a credit facility it is seeking to fund its purchase by Providence Equity Partners.
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Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley originally committed to provide a $700 million first-lien senior secured term loan, a $100 million first-lien senior secured revolver and a $350 million second-lien senior secured term loan, according to a July regulatory filing.

However, the size of the first-lien loan has been increased to $800 million, according to a person familiar with the deal.
The deal is expected to launch Monday, this person said.

After receiving unsolicited bids from potential acquirors, Washington D.C.-based Blackboard hired Barclays Capital in April to run the sale process. Providence agreed to acquire Blackboard in an all-cash transaction valued at $1.64 billion, plus the assumption of about $130 million of debt, according to a July 1 statement.

Blackboard is expected to be merged with Edline LLC, another educational software firm. Providence purchased Edline in 2009.
Standard & Poor’s cut its corporate credit rating on Blackboard, to B+ from BB-, after the acquisition was announced.