Qatar National Bank upsizes loan

30 May 2016

Lender has raised facility size following oversubscription from participating banks

Qatar National Bank (QNB), the biggest lender in the gas-rich Gulf state, has closed syndication of its three-year €2.25bn ($2.49bn) loan facility.

The senior unsecured euro term loan was upsized from €1.5bn, after the lender received strong demand for its credit with oversubscription by the 14 participating banks, QNB said in a statement to the Qatar Exchange, where its shares are traded. QNB will use the facility for general corporate purposes, and it will pay 1.05 per cent plus the euro Interbank Offered Rate (Euribor) every year.

QNB mandated French banks Credit Agricole and Societe Generale as initial mandated lead arrangers, underwriters and bookrunners to arrange the loan on its behalf. They were joined by the Netherlands’ ING Bank as initial mandated lead arranger.

The Doha branch of Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, Italy’s UniCredit Bank and Doha Bank were also mandated lead arrangers, while German lender Commerzbank’s Luxembourg unit joined the deal as arranger. Luxembourg’s Banque et Caisse d’Epargne de l’Etat, Banque Internationale a Luxembourg, South Korea’s Korea Development Bank, Japan’s Shinkin Central Bank, State Bank of India, Italy’s UBI Banca and Switzerland’s Zurcher Kantonalbank were the managers on the deal, according to reports.

Governments and private and public sector companies in the region are queuing up to tap debt markets before a possible interest rate hike by the US Federal Reserve in June. Dubai’s Noor Bank has successfully launched its $500m debut capital-boosting bond, the UAE’s Emirates Islamic bank has sold a $750m sukuk (Islamic bond), while Qatar’s Barwa Real Estate signed $1.13bn-worth of financing agreements with a local lender last week. Saudi Electricity Company has also secured a $900m loan in recent weeks. Two Dubai financiers, including Emirates NBD, are also in talks with lenders to raise a total of $1.7bn in financing.

On the sovereign side, Saudi Arabia has sent a request for proposals (RFP) for an international bond, while Qatar has recently printed a three-tranche $9bn bond. Earlier this month, Abu Dhabi raised $5bn in a dual-tranche bond.

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