SGX fully places out zero coupon convertible bonds

The Singapore Exchange Centre on Shenton Way. PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE (THE BUSINESS TIMES) - The Singapore Exchange (SGX) has fully placed out €240 million (S$386 million) of its zero coupon convertible bonds due March 1, 2024, with a "high-quality book of institutional investors", hours after the proposed issue was announced on Monday evening (Feb 1).

In a pre-market filing on Tuesday, the bourse said its offer was oversubscribed. The bonds were placed out through its indirect wholly owned subsidiary, SGX Treasury I.

Payment of the three-year, zero-coupon bonds is fully guaranteed by SGX.

The bonds can be converted into ordinary shares of SGX at an initial conversion price of $13.0944, which is a 32 per cent premium over the closing price of $9.92 on Feb 1, 2021. This represents a negative yield to maturity of 0.331 per cent per annum, said SGX in its announcement.

The bourse intends to allocate about 80 per cent of the bond proceeds to refinance existing debt, while the remaining 20 per cent will be for general corporate purposes.

"We are pleased with the strong support from investors for our maiden convertible bond issue. The attractive terms underscore strong investor confidence in SGX's credit fundamentals, solid business model and growth prospects. This issuance further diversifies our funding sources as we continue to identify strategic opportunities to drive growth across multiple asset classes," commented SGX chief executive Loh Boon Chye.

Credit Suisse and Morgan Stanley Asia have been appointed as the joint global coordinators and bookrunners for the issue.

OCBC Bank credit research analyst Ezien Hoo said convertible bonds issued by SGX-listed companies are relatively rare, with recent issuers being Singapore Airlines and Banyan Tree Holdings.

"Typically, a compelling equity story would be needed for investors to be happy to take a lower coupon rate. With equity markets in favour, it is likely that other corporates may attempt to come to market with a convertible bond," Ms Hoo told The Business Times on Monday evening.

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