AMD to help pay for ATI with $1.8B in new debt

The bill for the ATI acquisition is coming due right at a time when AMD's financial performance is suffering from a price war and increased competition.

Advanced Micro Devices plans to raise up to $1.8 billion through a debt offering, in part to pay for its acquisition of ATI and to keep its business operating during a rough stretch.

At least $500 million from the sale of the new senior notes, announced after the close of the stock market Monday, will be used to pay off a term loan with Morgan Stanley connected to the purchase of ATI, AMD said in a press release. The rest will be used to finance AMD's day-to-day operations and to hedge against the dilution of its stock.

Following another subpar quarter, analysts had been concerned that AMD was running out of cash. This deal will buy the company some additional flexibility, but AMD's long-term debt is rising. Before this deal, its long-term debt was $3.6 billion. By contrast, Intel's long-term debt is $1.8 billion.

AMD also received a downgrade in its credit rating earlier on Monday from Standard & Poor's. AMD lost $611 million in its first quarter as chip prices fell and Intel's Core lineup of chips improved its competitiveness against AMD's Opteron and Athlon 64 chips.