Record Asian G3 bond issuance, pick up in IPOs, define this year’s Triple A Country Awards, SE Asia

Best houses compete for deals amid rising DCM, ECM acitivity

IN a year of record issuance volume in Asian G3 bonds and a pick up in equity capital market (ECM) activity, Southeast Asia has manifested its fair share of deal flows in the region in 2017.

The slew of initial public offerings (IPOs) is driving the ECM volume with a total of US$8.7 billion as of November 16, according to figures supplied by Thomson Reuters, which already exceeded the US$6.3 billion volume for the whole of 2016. This also offset the declines recorded in follow-on offerings and convertible bonds.

Thailand is exhibiting a revival in the IPO market supported by strong liquidity and attractive valuations, as well as the participation of cornerstone investors. The Philippines has seen a number of new listings in 2017 to take advantage of the new administration’s push to ramp up infrastructure investments as well as ride on the growth prospects of the logistics industry.

Even Vietnam has a couple of IPO deals that grabbed the headlines – VietJet Aviation and Vincom Retail. Singapore saw its biggest IPO since 2011 with the S$2.35 billion (US$1.74 billion) share sale for NetLink NBN Trust. At the same time, a plethora of Singapore Reits and business trusts have accessed the market to raise capital.

In the bond market, Indonesia, which finally secured a full investment grade rating from the three international rating agencies this year, saw new names tapping the US dollar bond market for the first time, such as Agung Podomoro Land, PGN Saka and ABM Investama. In a landmark deal, Paiton Energy printed in August the first Asian project bond in two decades amounting to US$2 billion in two tranches of US$1.2 billion for 13 years and US$800 million for 20 years. The rupiah bond market is also witnessing an increasing volume of issuances fueled by state-owned enterprises from contractors and infrastructure-related companies.

From the Philippines, where the local issuers largely rely on domestic liquidity, leading to scarcity of new offshore bond supply for most of the year, Ayala Corporation returned to the US dollar bond market in a big way after a long hiatus with a US$400 million fixed-for-life perpetual offering. UnionBank of the Philippines also made a similar comeback to the market for the first time since 2004 also with the amount of US$400 million.

Meanwhile, the Singapore dollar bond market appears to be emerging as an alternative funding source for Chinese corporates with the likes of China Eastern Airlines and China Huarong Asset Management Company recently tapping the market for S$500 million and S$400 million, respectively.

Malaysia also saw some significant bond transactions in 2017, including the first panda bond for Southeast Asia under the Bond Connect programme for Maybank amounting to one billion yuan (US$151.50 million) and the inaugural Basel III-compliant tier 2 capital securities for Affin Bank amounting to one billion ringgit (US$243 million).

DBS emerged as a big winner in its home market in Singapore, scooping five awards – Best bank (Domestic), Best corporate and institutional bank (Domestic), Best equity adviser, Best bond adviser and Best loan adviser. In addition, DBS Vickers retains its Best brokerage accolade for the second year in a row.

CIMB also figured prominently in several award’s categories in Malaysia, winning the Best corporate and institutional bank (Domestic), Best equity adviser, Best bond adviser (Domestic) and Best M&A adviser.

Another local player that managed to wrestle some awards amid the foreign competition is BDO Capital and Investment Corporation in the Philippines, which was voted as Best corporate and institutional bank (Domestic), Best equity adviser and Best loan adviser.

Among the foreign banks, Citi nearly won all of the Best bank awards in the global category in Southeast Asia – Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore and Thailand. This award in Vietnam went to HSBC, retaining the accolade for the second consecutive year.

Credit Suisse manifested the strength of its corporate and institutional banking franchise in Southeast Asia as it won this award category in Indonesia, Singapore and Thailand. HSBC secured the award in Malaysia and Vietnam.

 

For the full list of winners, please click here for best houses, Southeast Asia.

For the full list of winners, please click here for best deals, Southeast Asia.