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Goodyear closes $680 million credit facility

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The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. reports it has closed a $680 million senior secured funded credit facility.

This facility, which matures in September 2007, refinances the company´s $680 million senior secured U.S. revolving credit facility, which would have matured on April 30, 2005. The new facility is secured by the same collateral that secured the U.S. revolving credit facility.

"Improving our credit profile is a key component of the company´s

turnaround strategy," said Richard J. Kramer, executive vice president and chief financial officer. "This includes refinancings to extend maturities, potential asset sales and, ultimately, increased equity funding."

The new facility will be utilized by Goodyear as needed to support letters of credit or for borrowings on a revolving basis, similar to the facility it replaces. Also consistent with the facility it replaces, about $500 million of the new facility will be utilized initially to support already existing letters of credit.

On July 21 the company announced plans to refinance the $680 million senior secured U.S. revolving credit facility with a $500 million senior secured funded credit facility. Lender demand was sufficient to increase it to $680 million. Lenders in the new facility will receive annual compensation equivalent to 4.5% over LIBOR.

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