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Aboitiz Equity Ventures secures permit to sell P20-B bonds

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ABOITIZ Equity Ventures, Inc. (AEV) received a permit on Tuesday from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to sell fixed-rate retail bonds worth P20 billion.

The permit will allow the holding firm to issue a base offer of P7.45 billion bonds from its P30-billion shelf registration in 2019 and a base offer of P550 million bonds under its P30-billion shelf registration program in 2022.

AEV will also offer an oversubscription option of up to P12 billion, which will also come from its P30-billion shelf registration program in 2022. The base offer and the oversubscription option are set to be issued on Dec. 7 with the offer period starting on Nov. 22 until Nov. 28.

AEV tapped BDO Capital & Investment Corp., BPI Capital Corp., China Bank Capital Corp., and First Metro Investment Corp. as the offer’s joint issue managers, bookrunners and underwriters.

It also tapped BDO Unibank, Inc.-Trust and Investments Group as its trustee, while Philippine Depository & Trust Corp. was appointed as the registrar and paying agent.

AEV said it intends to list the 2022 bonds — the P550 million base offer plus the P12 billion oversubscription option — with the Philippine Dealing and Exchange Corp.

According to a press release from the SEC, proceeds from the offer are expected to amount to P19.76 billion if the oversubscription option is fully exercised.

The company intends to use the funds for the acquisition by its wholly owned subsidiary, Aboitiz InfraCapital, Inc., of GMR-Megawide Cebu Airport Corp.

A portion of the proceeds will also be used to refinance the company’s maturing debt, the company added.

Previously, the bond issuance received the highest issue credit rating of PRS Aaa with a stable outlook from the Philippine Rating Services Corp.

A rating of PRS Aaa means that the issuance is of the highest quality and has minimal credit risk. It also means that the obligor has the capacity to meet its financial commitment on the obligation.

Meanwhile, a stable outlook means that the rating is likely to be maintained in the next 12 months.

On the stock market on Wednesday, shares in AEV lost P1.45 or 2.54% to P55.55 apiece. — Justine Irish P. Tabile