Eskom Bailout Emerging as Equity Swap by Biggest Bondholder

South Africa’s biggest pot of available cash -- 1.91 trillion rand ($128 billion) of civil-servant pensions and unemployment funds managed by the Public Investment Corp. -- is emerging as the key to rescuing the debt-stricken national power monopoly, Bloomberg News reported. The money manager has approached its parent agency, the National Treasury, with a proposal to ease the 464 billion-rand load of obligations crushing Eskom Holdings SOC Ltd., signaling officials are gearing up for the complex financial and political operation to convert about 95 billion rand of Eskom debt held by the PIC into equity. “There’s still a need to undertake a due diligence to confirm the viability of this proposal,” the Treasury said in a Dec. 11 response to questions from Bloomberg, its first statement connecting the PIC to an Eskom bailout. Read more