Company Announcements

BlackRock Smaller Companies Trust Plc - Fixed Rate Borrowing

BlackRock Smaller Companies Trust plc

549300MS535KC2WH4082

Fixed Rate Borrowing

BlackRock Smaller Companies Trust plc (‘the Company’) has agreed to issue £25 million in senior unsecured GBP denominated fixed rate private placement notes (the "Notes") at an annualised coupon of 2.47% with a 25-year bullet maturity. The funding date for the Notes is 16 September 2021 and the Notes will be due for repayment on 16 September 2046.

The net proceeds from the Company's issuance of the Notes will be used to repay existing indebtedness and to participate in investment opportunities as and when they arise.

The Company considers obtaining such Sterling denominated financing on an unsecured basis at this price level and at a 25-year term to be highly attractive. Furthermore, the issuance of the Notes has the advantage of balancing the maturity profile of the Company's liabilities.

In addition to the Notes, the Company has a range of borrowings and facilities in place to provide balance between longer term and short term maturities and between fixed and floating rates of interest. Fixed rate funding now consists of the Company’s existing £15 million debenture, which matures in July 2022, £25 million senior unsecured fixed rate private placement notes issued in May 2017 at a coupon of 2.74%, £20 million senior unsecured fixed rate private placement notes issued in December 2019 at a coupon of 2.41%,   and the new Notes maturing in 2046 as described above. Shorter term variable rate funding consists of a £35 million three-year revolving loan facility and an uncommitted overdraft facility of £10 million.

It is the Board’s intention that gearing will not exceed 15% of the net assets of the Company at the time of the drawdown of the relevant borrowings. Under normal operating conditions it is envisaged that gearing will be within a range of 0%-15% of net assets.  The Company’s net gearing currently stands at 6.9% of net assets.

All enquiries:

Ms S Beynsberger
for and on behalf of BlackRock Investment Management (UK) Limited
Company Secretary

Tel: 0207 743 2639

8 September 2021

Disclaimer

This notice is for information only and does not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security and shall not constitute an offer, solicitation or sale of any securities in any jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation or sale would be unlawful.  This notice is not for distribution or release in or into Switzerland, Japan or the United States of America (or to U.S. persons), or in any other jurisdiction in which offers or sales of securities would be prohibited by applicable law. The securities have not been and will not be registered under the U.S. Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the “Act”) and may not be offered or sold in the United States absent registration or an applicable exemption from the registration requirements of the Act.