BDO, Metrobank to tap offshore debt market

MANILA, Philippines? BDO Unibank Inc. and Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co. (Metrobank) are tapping the offshore debt market to bankroll general corporate purposes and refinance existing obligations amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

After raising P36 billion through the issuance of fixed-rate peso bonds in the domestic debt market, BDO is now turning to the offshore debt market through the issuance of dollar fixed-rate notes.

The debt instrument will be issued under the $5 billion euro medium-term note program (EMTN) of BDO.

The bank initially priced the 5.5-year at US Treasury plus 235 basis points area. The dollar benchmark-size offering generally means at least $500 million, but the exact size remains undetermined.

BDO has tapped Standard Chartered Bank as sole global coordinator, while Standard Chartered Bank and Bank of America Securities are serving as joint lead managers and joint book-runners.

BDO last tapped the offshore debt market in August 2017 where it raised $700 million through the issuance of fixed-rate senior notes to support the bank’s lending operations and general corporate purposes.

The Sy family-owned bank earlier raised its bond and commercial paper program to P400 billion earlier this year from only P100 billion when it was launched in August 2018.

Of the total, BDO has raised P111.1 billion, including P36 billion from the issuance of fixed-rate peso bonds early this month, a record P40.1 billion via the issuance of senior fixed-rate bonds on Feb. 3 and P35 billion via the issuance of fixed-rate bonds in February last year.

The bank has also raised P41.32 billion through the issuance of long-term negotiable certificates of time deposits (LTNCDs) since April 2015.

On the other hand, Metrobank is also planning to issue a 5.5-year dollar-denominated senior unsecured notes to refinance existing indebtedness.

The country’s second-largest bank has mandated UBS and First Metro Investment Corp. (FMIC) as joint global coordinators and book runners.

Metrobank has also tapped MUFG and SMBC Nikko Capital Markets Limited as joint lead managers.