CHICAGO — The Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago plans to sell up to $450 million of new-money and refunding bonds as it finalizes financing plans for a $550 million replacement facility needed due to capacity constraints at its current downtown home.
The rehabilitation hospital won approval in February for its project from the Illinois Health Facilities Planning and Services Review Board, and the Illinois Finance Authority board gave preliminary approval to the transaction at a meeting this week.
The deal was among a handful of transactions totaling nearly $1 billion in debt that the conduit agency advanced this week.
The sale will refund about $110 million in current debt with the remainder providing new money. RIC — which is ranked among the top rehabilitation hospitals in the nation — plans a 242-bed, 27-story replacement hospital near its current home in the Streeterville neighborhood in downtown Chicago.
JPMorgan and Goldman Sachs are underwriters on the transaction with Hammond Hanlon Camp LLC advising RIC and SNR Denton LLP serving as borrower's counsel. Jones Day is bond counsel.
RIC intends to seek first-time ratings as part of the deal, slated for sale later this spring and is expected to close in June. The sale could include a mix of fixed-and floating-rate debt. The facility tentatively plans to publicly issue between $100 million and $150 million of the bonds in a fixed-rate mode. The remainder would be sold at a floating rate with some being publicly offered and a portion possibly privately placed, according to IFA documents.
The bonds would be secured by an obligation of RIC and carry a final maturity of no more than 40 years.
The hospital will occupy 17 floors, with another seven housing a parking garage, and three providing medical office space. The hospital will finance the new facility through a mix of its own revenues from investments and operations, philanthropy donations, and an estimated $40 million expected from the sale of its existing building. RIC aims to raise $220 million in donations through 2016.
RIC operates a health care system that specializes in comprehensive rehabilitation services for the physically disabled. It currently operates a 182-bed hospital and outpatient facility downtown and other non-hospital facilities in the Chicago area that provide day rehabilitation, outpatient, vocational and recreational care and activities.
"In order to continue to effectively support RIC's mission and manage capacity constraints, RIC leadership determined that a replacement hospital was needed," read IFA documents. "This determination was driven by several factors, including: an aging current facility built almost 40 years ago that is no longer effective to meet current rehabilitation standards." The facility must turn away hundreds of patients annually due to limited bed availability.
RIC plans to break ground in July and anticipates moving to the new facility in late 2016.
The board gave final approval to the University of Chicago's sale of up to $400 million to refund debt and raise new money for projects in its ongoing capital program.
About $200 million would represent new money to finance the planning, design, and construction of various facilities including the William Eckhardt Research Center, the university's laboratory schools, and other educational, research, and administrative facilities on its campuses.
The bonds would represent a general unsecured corporate obligation of the school and not be secured by a mortgage or security interest on university assets.
Separately, the university may issue up to $300 million of taxable bonds to finance projects. The university carries current long-term ratings of Aa1 from Moody's Investors Service and AA from Standard & Poor's.
Morgan Stanley is senior manager with JPMorgan serving as co-senior manager. Cabrera Capital Markets LLC, Loop Capital Markets LLC, and Northern Trust Securities are co-managers. Chapman and Cutler LLP is bond counsel.
The university — which has selectivity on par with Ivy League schools — has $2.4 billion of outstanding debt.
"The Aa1 rating reflects the University of Chicago's strong management and governance structure, its market position as a leading national research university, favorable historical trend of operating performance and cash flow, and a strong fundraising profile," Moody's wrote in a recent report.
The school's primary credit challenge is its "extremely high leverage relative to operations and balance sheet resources," Moody's added.