Ecobank to list $300m bond in London Stock Exchange

Ecobank Nigeria said that arrangements are finalised to list its $300 million bond on the London Stock Exchange, having successfully priced the bond issuance maturing in February 2026, with today as its bond settlement.

In a statement, the Ecobank Transnational Incorporated subsidiary said its fixed-rate, dollar-denominated bond, with a five-year tenor, carries a coupon rate of 7.125 per cent.

“It is accompanied by an Issuer Rating of B- from Fitch Rating Agency and S & P,” the statement read. “The coupon/yield represents the lowest ever coupon/yield achieved by a Nigerian financial institution for a benchmark bond transaction.

“At the peak of marketing the transaction, the issue was over three times over-subscribed, with significant interest from international investors. The transaction opened with Initial Price Thoughts of 7.75 per cent and finally tightened to close at 7.125 per cent on the back of robust demand.”

According to the bank, the strength and depth of the book demonstrated global investors’ strong appetite for the Ecobank franchise in Nigeria, and a testament to the strength of the Ecobank Group.

“This transaction is the first non-sovereign bond from Africa in 2021 and is a milestone capital raise for the banking sector in Nigeria, giving Ecobank access to global debt capital markets, and more favourable credit terms commensurate with its strong financial position and robust capital structure.”

For international investors, the transaction represents an attractive option to gain exposure to Nigeria, the bank noted.

It also followed a series of virtual global investor-calls, with a number of blue-chip local, regional and international financial institutions, led by Citi, Mashreq, Renaissance Capital and Standard Chartered Bank as joint lead managers and bookrunners, it explained.

Also, the Managing Director of Ecobank Nigeria, Patrick Akinwuntan, explained that “despite the challenging global environment owing to the Covid-19 pandemic, and on the back of a successful N50 billion Tier 2 issuance in December 2020, ENG was able to successfully issue and price Nigeria’s first 2021 senior unsecured five-year bond transaction.

“Ecobank Nigeria, through this issuance, is being proactive in optimising its capital structure as it continues to drive its medium-term growth strategy of establishing itself as a leading facilitator of pan-Africa and international trade and payments.”

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