- AltaGas is revisiting its 52-week (and seven-year) low.
- The company now offers a 9.6% dividend yield.
- Is the dividend safe?
AltaGas (TSX:ALA) used a mix of debt and essentially stock for the ~CAD$9 billion WGL Holdings acquisition. The debt included a ~US$4.95 billion bridge facility. It also raised capital from the markets by selling CAD$2.6 billion of subscription receipts in Q1 2017.
The acquisition took about a year and four months to finally close in July 2018. In the process, the company had to pay interest on the debt and high dividend-equivalent payments for the receipts, which were converted to common shares when the acquisition closed.
For example, in 2017, AltaGas incurred CAD$170 million of interest expense, which was 12.6% higher than the interest expense of CAD$151 million in 2016 largely due to the financing costs of roughly CAD$19 million associated with the bridge facility.
In 2017, AltaGas paid about CAD$147.84 million of dividend-equivalent payments for the subscription receipts. In comparison, it declared ~CAD$362 million of common stock dividends and ~CAD$59 million of preferred dividends.