BPI raises record P42 billion via bond issue

Lawrence Agcaoili - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Ayala-led Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) has raised a record P42 billion as it returned to the domestic debt market via the issuance of peso fixed-rate bonds early this month.

The amount was more than eight times the original issue size of P5 billion and was higher than the record P40.1 billion raised by BDO Unibank Inc. in February.

The 168-year old bank was forced to shorten the offer period for the debt paper that carries an interest of 4.05 percent per annum to just five days. The offer period started on March 2 and ended on March 6.

“This is due to overwhelming demand from its investor base which includes institutional investors and high net-worth and retail clients,” the BPI said.

The listing date on the Philippine Dealing and Exchange Corp. (PDEx) is scheduled on March 27.

BPI treasurer Dino Gasmen said earlier proceeds of the fund raising activity would support the bank’s diversification of funding sources, balance sheet expansion, and for general corporate purposes.

The oldest bank in Southeast Asia and the Philippines has been tapping both the onshore and offshore debt markets to raise funds to finance its expanding loan portfolio.

In November last year, BPI decided to double the size of its bond and commercial paper program to P100 billion from P50 billion.

During its maiden issuance, the listed bank raised P25 billion in December 2018 followed by another P15.3 billion via the issuance of peso fixed-rate bonds due 2022 last January.

It also raised P3.12 billion from the issuance of long-term negotiable certificates of time deposits (LTNCDs) due 2025 in October last year.

The Ayala-led bank also tapped the offshore debt market last year, raising 100 million Swiss francs from its maiden ASEAN Green bond issuance to bankroll green eligible projects and another $300 million as it became the first Philippine bank to issue dollar-denominated ASEAN green bonds.         


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