Bond markets are not particularly well-known for being cutting edge. The vast majority of trading still takes place over the phone, and the settlement process more often than not still takes days rather than hours or minutes. But in emerging markets, where funding innovation is helping borrowers overcome capital bottlenecks and Fintech is enabling new pockets of growth, that perception is changing – and rightly so. We speak with John Gandolfo, the Treasurer of IFC, the private sector-focused arm of the World Bank, about the headwinds facing the global economy, the growing importance of sustainability, and what the rise of Fintech and Regtech means for emerging market debt.
Viathan Group is an emerging energy player in the power and gas sector in Nigeria but in financing circles, the company is perhaps best known for its innovative 2018 infrastructure bond issuance – when it pioneered a new structure for the country’s capital markets. Babajide Ibironke, the Group’s CFO, talks to Bonds & Loans about the company’s growth ambitions and funding strategy, overcoming the perpetual dysfunction of Nigeria’s power sector, and discusses why ESG and fintech are unavoidable trends that finance professionals and financial institutions must embrace – or face obsolescence and extinction.
Omega Geração S.A., one of Brazil’s top renewables players, debuted in the local debenture markets earlier this year with a carefully tailored four-part transaction that could serve as a template for corporates looking to finance infrastructure by tapping the country’s diverse liquidity pools.
Bonds & Loans interviews Bruno Moraes, Director (Energy) at Actis, about investment prospects in the Brazilian markets, Actis's focus on renewables and their new infrastructure fund.
UAE-based lifestyle conglomerate Majid Al Futtaim broke new ground earlier this year when the company placed the world’s first benchmark-sized corporate green sukuk. Bonds & Loans spoke with John Arentz, Head of Treasury at Majid Al Futtaim, about the company’s green capital markets debut, the strategy underpinning the transaction, and why – green bond or not – treasurers need to bolster their ESG credentials in the face of a fast-changing investment landscape.
Chile’s impeccably timed and well-executed deal saw a near 10x oversubscription on its dual-tranche green issuance worth nearly USD2.4bn (equivalent), which also became the sovereign’s first new issue with a negative NIP concession.
Following a successful debut in the European ESG-linked loan space in February, Acciona repeated the move with a dual-tranche dual-currency transaction worth USD30mn in Chile, only the third ESG linked loan in Latin America.
Hadley Peer Marshall, Managing Director of Infrastructure Debt at Brookfield speaks with Bonds & Loans about managing local currency constraints when investing in infrastructure in Latin America, and new sectors generating investment opportunities.
In May, Russian Railway’s issued the country’s first benchmark size Green Bond raising EUR500mn in 8-year notes. Capitalising on a warmer funding environment, as well as the company’s strong capital markets track-record, the transaction also marked the lowest-ever yield on a Russian issuance - generating an order book that was over 3.5x oversubscribed.
ESG – shorthand for environmental, social and governance – considerations are increasingly being prioritised by organisations, investors and lenders alike. But quantifying its influence on credit risk and funding is proving to be quite elusive. A group of former finance professionals and academics is trying to change that by putting “intangibles” like human risk, corporate culture and values at the centre of that relationship.
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