Argentina Picks Advisors
Argentina named three international
investment banks to advise on restructuring $99.4 billion in
sovereign bonds, in default since December 2001. Economy
Minister Roberto Lavagna picked UBS
Warburg, Merrill Lynch and Barclays.
The government hired a group of local banks comprising
state-owned Banco de la Nación
Argentina, Banco Galicia and
BBVA. These banks could share at least $88
million in fees if the restructuring is successful.
Leading international investment
banks such CSFB were disqualified from bidding
because of their role in previous bond sales for Argentina.
Others, such as Citigroup, refused to bid for
the mandate. The government had earlier retained Lazard
Frères to act as advisor. International banks
backed out either for reputational reasons or out of fear of
not being paid. Bankers worried that Argentina would insist on
structuring a proposal to creditors that would fail for lack of
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