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18 | ifr special report | September 2009 SPAIN Spanish bank equity prices


120 100 80 60 40 20 0


Aug 07


Oct Dec Source: Thomson Reuters Datastream


in Spain in 2009. The bank has worked on the merger between Ferrovial and Cintra, the sale of Cintra Aparcamientos, Enel’s acquisition of a 25% stake in Endesa and Acciona’s purchase of Endesa Renovables. “BBVA’s strategy in corporate finance is supported by its unparalleled knowledge of Spanish corporates and access to decision makers, our broad presence in Latin America, our unique knowledge of the credit markets and the ability to help our clients with the financing,” said Mario Pardo, head of corporate finance at BBVA. In the last year BBVA has also reinforced its leadership in the financing of transport infrastructure worldwide. It worked on a range of projects, such as the €1bn enlargement of the M25 in the UK, the €480m enlargement of the A5 highway in Germany, the A2 highway construction in Poland and the €112m Mogan project in Spain. BBVA has also designed a €66m financial plan for the construction of several schools in the Spanish province of Cantabria, provided funds to develop ground operations for high-speed rail networks in Spain, and led the financing for a number of hotels across Europe and an office complex in Paris.


“ Foreign ambitions


Santander has been a very liquid bank in not so liquid markets this year and shown that it is an institution with a sturdy balance sheet and a strong capacity to raise funds. The bank has invested steadily to improve its capabilities since 2007 and even during the credit crisis continued to conduct business with clients.


An increasing number of clients are now recognising the immense benefit of having long-term and close relationship ties with certain banks, a trend that perfectly suits Santander. Though not ubiquitous in all markets, it is continuing to reinforce rela- tionships within its existing client franchise through its willingness and capability to provide credit. Strong customer focus is also evident with the bank’s investor base, by servicing clients’ needs, tailoring solutions and ensuring all transactions have undergone stringent risk analytics and quality checks.


Santander has adapted products to meet the demands of the investors and the market and has been able to issue transac- tions throughout the course of the last 12 months, said Ignacio Domínguez-Adame, head of global credit markets at Santander. Having a healthy balance sheet has played a prominent role in being able to provide bridge financing within the capital markets. The bank is more inclined towards the cross selling of the different products it offers within the global capital markets as this brings in profitably and a regular source of business. Despite the massive drop in M&A activity, Santander has been involved in a host of blockbuster M&A financings and a range of solutions across equity and debt capital markets. The bank helped fund Enel’s €8bn purchase of a 25% stake in Endesa, Pfizer’s $63bn acquisition of Wyeth, and Roche in raising €16bn of bonds in Europe and US$16bn of debt in the US market to finance its US$42bn takeover of Genentech.


Feb 08


Apr Jun Aug Oct Dec


Feb 09


Banco Santander BBVA


Santander also helped finance InBev’s US$52bn purchase of Anheuser-Busch, worked closely with Gas Natural on its US$24bn bridge financing for the purchase of Union Fenosa and was one of several banks to extend a €10bn credit line to Porsche.


Apr Jun Aug


Santander seems to have gradually moved beyond the Iberian capital markets in the last 24 months and the vast majority of its business is now being generated from areas outside of Spain. The firm has benefitted from more clients issuing globally in the US capital markets and is also looking to strengthen prominent positions in Brazil, Mexico and Chile. Santander, which it said targets prof- itability, not rankings, does not to put too much emphasis on league table standings. However, the bank’s consistent rise provides strong evidence that the bank is employing a successful and, more importantly, the right strategy, said Domínguez-Adame. In the European corporate bond rankings, Santander was placed 30 in 2007, 16 in 2008, and reached number ten for the first half of 2009. "The bank has played to its strengths, a solid credit rating and balance sheet, and this has enabled Santander to capture market share and gain ground on its competitors over the last few years," said Domínguez- Adame.


ifre.com


The general improvement in the market this year has resulted in record primary market volumes in European credit, surpassing €200bn of issuance. Some in the market are already looking forward to what 2010 might bring. Further improvement and stabilisation of market conditions could lead to rising demand for lower rated deals in the Triple B range, or even below investment grade, depending on the issuer. “It will be hard for the market to maintain current issuing levels as many firms are demanding less credit than last year,” said Dominguez Adame. “Though I do not see spreads tightening back to 2007 levels, lower rated corporates might be able to capture money from investors, an this will have impact in volumes.”





Santander has been involved in a host of blockbuster M&A financings and a range of solutions across equity and debt capital markets.


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