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ALI raises P 10B from bond issue

/ 04:06 AM June 30, 2020

Property giant Ayala Land Inc. (ALI) has raised a total of P10 billion from the issuance of local bonds, raising the curtain for nonbank corporate issuers to tap the local bond market anew after the Philippines was subjected to strict lockdown protocols to contain the coronavirus pandemic in mid-March.

ALI’s two-year fixed rate bonds due 2022, which carried a coupon rate of 3 percent a year, were listed on the Philippine Dealing and Exchange Corp. on Friday.

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The bond offer was strongly received and was oversubscribed by 1.75 times the base offer, enabling ALI to increase the issue size from P6 billion to a total of P10 billion, the property developer reported.

“We are pleased with the reception for our two-year bond issuance. Our primary objective during the last three months was to ensure that we preserve value for Ayala Land and maintain financial sustainability. It was therefore imperative that we ensure that we have more than adequate liquidity to meet our obligations and that we manage our cost of funding during this period. We hope that our success will spur investor confidence and pave the way for the reopening of the local debt capital market,” ALI president and chief executive officer Bernard Vincent Dy said in a press statement on Monday.“We are confident that as the economy continues to reopen, business will continue to pick up and we hope to resume our expansion program within the next few months,” he added.

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With local benchmark interest rates approaching historical lows and the current system liquidity nearly reaching twice the level in 2019, ALI saw an opportunity to lower borrowing costs while lengthening debt maturity profile.BPI Capital Corp., BDO Capital and Investment Corp. and China Bank Capital Corp. were the joint lead underwriters for the issuance while PNB and Investment Corp. and SB Capital Investment Corp. acted as colead managers.

“We commend ALI for their leadership and confidence in entering the market under what are truly unprecedented circumstances,” SEC Commissioner Ephyro Luis Amatong said during the listing ceremonies. “ALI’s decision to tap the local bond market is also a strategic one.”

Amatong said ALI was aware of the value that bond investors placed on well-known issuers with an established track record of capital market access, bolstered by strong credit ratings.

The latest issuance raises the total amount outstanding of ALI bonds to P120 billion. INQ

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