The Dr Pepper/Seven-Up Cos.' underwriting banks signed up three co-agents for a new $875 million bank deal.

The movie is expected to help pave the way for a smooth syndication.

Barclays Bank, Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce, and First National Bank of Chicago each agreed late last week to commit $100 million.

Refusal Would Have Raised Doubts

Had the banks declined, it could have raised questions about the credit in the loan market, since all three had helped underwrite a $750 million credit for the company this spring.

That deal was canceled in July, when Dr Pepper withdrew a $600 million stock offering.

As administrative agent, Bankers Trust committed $325 million, while Chase and Nations-Bank committed $275 apiece.

Their underwriting commitments will be reduced on a pro rata basis by the $300 million of fresh commitments from the three new coagents.

Some May Be Invited Back

A bank meeting for potential syndicate members will be held in October, with the intention of closing the deal by the end of the month.

In the previous deal this spring, 13 banks committed $50 million each as lead managers. It's possible that some or all of these banks may be asked to play a similar role before the general syndicate gets under way.

As of late last week, the syndication strategy was still being hammered out by the tree managing agents and three co-agents.

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