Sabic looks ahead to bonds

19 December 2003
Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (Sabic)is in the process of evaluating proposals from a handful of international banks for a mandate to help it attract a credit rating. It is understood that Citibank, Credit Suisse First Boston, Deutsche Bank, HSBCand JP Morgan Chase & Company are among the banks interested in the mandate.

'It wants to get a strong rating from an international agency to raise its profile,' says a banker interested in the mandate. 'And it would put Sabic in a position where either fresh finance could be raised through bond issues or major refinancings of existing facilities could be pushed down this path.'

Bankers say one of the early Sabic refinancings that might be suitable for a bond issue would be the Eur 2,353 million ($2,899 million) finance package for the acquisition of DSM Petrochemicals (MEED 10:1:03).

'This would be ideal: there was plenty of due diligence done on this quite recently for the project/corporate finance facility, and there is almost certainly a desire on Sabic's part to push out the tenor on the transaction,' says the banker.

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