Loan House of the Year: BBVA

Loan House of the Year: BBVA

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In the Latin American loan capital market, BBVA aims to be a pioneer in providing innovative financing solutions. Yet engineering new products has not come at the expense of overall deal volume. In 2018, BBVA closed the year leading 27 syndicated loans and topping the Latin American loan league tables.

Among the biggest transactions was Iberdrola’s $400 million term loan, the first green loan in Mexico and Latin America. Since the closing of the Iberdrola loan in April, BBVA has replicated the green loan structure elsewhere in the region. In October, it led the first green loan in Peru for Ferreycorp and has another two possible mandates in the pipeline. “We try to come up with tailor-made financing solutions,” says Eddy Lacayo, the managing director of corporate lending in Latin America.

While BBVA may differentiate its Latin American loan practice through innovative structuring, the Spanish bank has also led sizeable deals over the finish line.

In March, BBVA led the first syndicated loan for a Mexican state with the MXN20 billion ($1.1 billion) Estado de Chihuahua transaction. Prior to tapping the private market, Chihuahua had relied on bilateral loans. “The motivation to use a syndicated loan was to optimize Chihuahua’s debt structure. We were looking to give them a structure that would reduce their financing expenses and reduce the interest rate significantly for the government, while freeing up some capital for state purposes,” Lacayo says.

Another standout transaction led by BBVA was Coppel’s MXN36 billion syndicated loan, the largest in Mexican history. “The Coppel loan was a good opportunity to reconfirm to the market our ability to push the limit and demonstrate the demand of the Mexican peso in the local market at a time when there was still a lot of liquidity, but also our ability to execute the deal before the presidential election,” Lacayo says.

Another successful market for BBVA has been the multicurrency, multinational loan space. “The multicurrency structure is particularly useful to clients with operations in multiple countries across Latin America,” says Lacayo. Last year, BBVA led Enel Chile’s $2 billion bridge financing, which had both dollar-denominated and peso-denominated tranches.