Enlarging the Menu

Mar 1, 2012

Asian buy-side participation in LatAm debt deals remains meager, but greater efforts are being made to cultivate accounts from Singapore to Tokyo.

by Ben Miller

Asia’s vast buy-side potential has really yet to be exploited by Latin American issuers looking to diversify their funding bases. This is slowly changing, however, as the region becomes more than just an afterthought through greenshoe options on dollar bonds, and after América Móvil (AMX) ventured into the renminbi market this year to mark LatAm’s first-ever renminbi-denominated Dim Sum deal.

Yet, lack of familiarity with LatAm credits, an historic distrust of the region and an inability to assess high-yield credits means that Asian investors are only likely to welcome but a handful of Latin names, despite having considerable sums of money to put to work.

América Móvil’s 1 billion yuan ($160 million) bond sold in Hong Kong in February represented LatAm’s entrance into a new market. The three-year so-called Dim Sum bond could be the first of several for the telecom, and other high-grade issuers...

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