American Equity Investment Life Holding Co. announced Tuesday that it will commence a public offering of $250 million of senior unsecured notes due in 2021. The notes are tendered to raise cash for a possible exchange offer for its outstanding December 2029 notes for cash and newly issued shares of common stock, the West Des Moines-based annuity company said, as well as to repay its existing revolving credit facility and other expenses. Alternatively, the company could opt to use the offering's proceeds to acquire its outstanding convertible senior notes due in 2015, it said. Fitch Ratings has assigned a BB rating to the proposed issuance and said it would not affect American Equity's long-term issuer default rating.