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Tyson Foods Benefits from Solid Capital Structure

17 June 2009

US - Tyson Foods reports that its recent capital restructuring has brought stability and financial flexibility.

Tyson Foods, Inc. has reported today that the capital restructuring it underwent in recent months secured more than $1.7 billion in liquidity as of March 28 and has ensured financial flexibility while addressing more than $1.8 billion in near-term debt maturities.

Speaking at the Barclays Capital Leveraged Finance Consumer Conference, Dennis Leatherby, Tyson's executive vice president and chief financial officer, said, "Tyson has a solid capital structure. We have strong liquidity and financial flexibility."

In September, Tyson began capital restructuring by issuing 22.4 million Class A Common Shares and $458 million in Senior Convertible Notes. In March, the company successfully completed an $810 million high yield bond offering and replaced its previous revolving credit facility with a $1 billion asset-based lending facility.

"Despite volatile commodity markets, we have been disciplined in reducing our debt load," Mr Leatherby said. "Our net debt at the end of our second quarter was $2.6 billion, compared to a high of nearly $5 billion in 2001."

Tyson has previously reported that its chicken, beef, pork and prepared foods segments are all profitable. Mr Leatherby said the chicken segment has made significant improvement as a result of sales volume, product mix, shorter-term contracts with customers and operational efficiencies. He also said Tyson's chicken business will have a stronger third quarter than indicated on its earnings call on 4 May.

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