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Argentina Starts Roadshow in Bid to Restructure $72 Billion

Pablo Gonzalez and Ignacio Olivera Doll

(Bloomberg) -- Argentina and the province of Buenos Aires will start setting up virtual meetings this week with institutional investors as they continue the process of restructuring more than $72 billion in debt, according to people familiar with the plan.

The national government will call on about 20 institutions and funds -- including BlackRock, Ashmore and Fintech’s David Martinez -- to present its offer to restructure $65 billion in debt, the people said asking not to be named because the plan isn’t public yet.

The main objective of the meetings will be to seek the investors’ opinion about the formal offer. No negotiations will be held.

Buenos Aires plans to call their own bondholders on Wednesday or Thursday to proceed with a similar roadshow to restructure at least $7 billion in obligations, the people said.

While both administrations are telling their financial advisers -- including Bank of America Corp., HSBC Holdings Plc, Citigroup Inc. and Lazard Ltd. -- that there won’t be a sweetener, the situation may change if the gap between their offers and investor demands are close after May 8.

Spokesmen for the Argentine Minister and Buenos Aires Province both declined to comment.

While creditor groups rejected the offer after it was presented, bond prices rose. That’s because, even if estimates vary, the value of the offer is seen as higher than where the bonds were trading in secondary markets previously, said the people. Government, adviser and creditor calculations of the offer’s net present value vary in a range between 46 cents and 33 cents on the dollar, the people added.

A group of holders of bonds of the province of Buenos Aires also rejected the official offer on Monday, according to an emailed statement.

(Updates with NPV range in seventh paragraph. An earlier version of this story corrected the amount of debt to be restructured in first, second paragraphs.)

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