RCBC seeks to raise P 3B via bond offering | Inquirer Business
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RCBC seeks to raise P 3B via bond offering

/ 04:06 AM June 22, 2020

Yuchengco-led Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. plans to return to the local bond market as early as next month to raise at least P3 billion to help grow its loan book and diversify its funding base.

In a phone interview on Saturday, RCBC senior executive vice president and treasurer Horacio Cebrero III said the final size of the forthcoming bonds, which would have a tenor of two years, would depend on market appetite.

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The bond deal will likely be launched by end-July or August, Cebrero said.

“Use of proceeds is still to support the asset growth of the bank,” Cebrero said, adding that RCBC would likely grow its loans in line with the industry, which is still expanding loans at a double-digit levels albeit at a slower pace compared to last year.

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“That’s also part of the strategy on liability management—extending and diversifying investor base,” Cebrero said.

Asked how much growth in lending RCBC was expecting for this year, Cebrero said the bank was still looking at “close to industry growth.” “But it’s not going to be the same as previous years,” he said.

Based on the latest data from the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, outstanding loans of universal and commercial banks grew by 12.7 percent year-on-year in April, slower than the 13.6-percent expansion in March.

RCBC disclosed to the Philippine Stock Exchange last week that it would soon access the local bond market once again. This will be the bank’s fifth offering tranche under its P100-billion bond and commercial paper program.

The final terms will be determined prior to the launch of the issue depending on market and other conditions, the disclosure said.

RCBC has so far raised a total of P37.55 billion under its bond program which started in 2019.

The bank’s most recent bond offering was completed in April 2020 amounting to P7.05 billion.

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In the first quarter, RCBC grew its net profit by 77 percent year-on-year to P2.3 billion on higher interest earnings and treasury gains alongside improved operating efficiency. This translated to an annualized return on equity of 11.1 percent and annualized return on assets of 1.28 percent.

The small and medium enterprise and consumer loan segments jacked up RCBC’s loan volume, respectively growing by 26 percent and 20 percent year-on-year. Credit card receivables expanded by 42 percent, while card base rose by 25 percent to 914,000. —DORIS DUMLAO-ABADILLA INQ

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