The FINANCIAL — The EBRD is investing 152.5 million Romanian lei (€33.4 million) in a tranche of senior unsecured bonds issued by UniCredit Bank S.A., the Romanian subsidiary of UniCredit S.p.A. and one of the leading financial institutions in the country.
The tranche is part of a 610 million lei bond issuance by the bank, a major institution with a nationwide network of almost 200 branches, serving more than 600,000 customers. The bond issuance aims to strengthen the bank with additional funds which will allow it to increase its support for the real economy, according to EBRD.
Capital market development is one of the EBRD’s priorities in the countries where it invests. In this context the Bank launched a €150 million Financial Institutions Bond Market Framework for Romania which specifically aims to develop the bond market, diversify funding sources and address balance sheet mismatches. In recent years the Bank has expanded its activities to include corporate bonds and only a month ago closed a landmark transaction with Globalworth Real Estate Investments.
Matteo Patrone, EBRD Regional Director, Romania and Bulgaria, said: “This is an important transaction for UniCredit, for the EBRD and for the Romanian economy. Our acquisition of senior unsecured bonds is not only a sign of our confidence in our partner, but also a signal to the market. At the same time, it will be primarily local private enterprises that stand to benefit from the increase in available funds to finance their growth.”
Lucyna Stańczak-Wuczyńska, EBRD Director for EU Banks in the Financial Institutions group, added: “The development of the local capital market is key for Romania’s further successful growth and the EBRD is committed to supporting both as our key targets in the country. The successful issuance is testimony to the quality of the product and the appetite in the market. We are proud to be associated with this transaction and we remain available to do more.”
“We are pleased to have successfully completed this bond issuance and seen the significant interest shown by our investors. We aim to continue diversifying our financing structure, and in Romania we are the first bank to launch new investment structures that meet the needs of local qualified investors and are aligned to the Romanian economy’s characteristics and capacity,” declared Rasvan Radu, CEO of UniCredit Bank.
The EBRD is a leading institutional investor in Romania and developing Romania’s capital markets is among its priorities. The EBRD focuses on promoting stability and expanding products in the financial sector, on strengthening infrastructure through improved efficiency and greater private sector involvement, as well as on restructuring the power sector and increasing energy efficiency and sustainability. The Bank has invested over €7.5 billion in the country to date in 400 projects.