Bank of Sharjah to Plan Dollar Bond Sale to Repay Debt

(Bloomberg) -- Bank of Sharjah PJSC plans to issue dollar-denominated bonds later this year to help the United Arab Emirates lender repay existing debt, people with knowledge of the plan said.

The company wants to raise about $500 million in a sale likely to take place in September or October, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the details are private. The bank, based in the emirate of Sharjah, and will use the proceeds to help settle notes maturing in June next year, they said.

“We’re exploring multiple options for an issue of senior unsecured securities, including private placements and a public deal, as well as in currencies such as the Swiss franc,” Martin Edmonds, the treasurer at Bank of Sharjah said. The lender earlier this year got shareholder approval for a Tier I hybrid issuance, which typically combines characteristics of both debt and equity.

Bank of Sharjah raised $115 million last week from a private sale of three-year floating-rate notes, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The securities were priced at 190 basis points over the three-month Libor, the data showed. In February 2017, it sold $500 million of five-year bonds at a spread of 237 basis points over similar-dated U.S. Treasuries.

Financial institutions account for 34% of the $67 billion of bonds sold in the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council this year, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

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