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IFC Completes Innovative Syndication Deal to Boost Credit for Brazilian Trade Finance


IFC contacts:

Lotte Pang                                                

Phone: +1 202-758-4290
E-mail:
LPang@ifc.org

Adriana Gomez

Phone: +1 202-458-5204

E-mail:
AGomez@ifc.org

Unibanco contacts:

Marcelo Mota
Phone: +55 11 3905-1391
E-mail: marcelo.mota@unibanco.com.br
 
Paula Janer
Phone: +55 11 3905-1010
E-mail: paula.janer@unibanco.com.br


Washington, D.C., February 12, 2009—IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, announced today that it completed syndication of an innovative $60 million transaction for Unibanco that will strengthen the bank’s ability to serve Brazilian exporters and importers whose funding options have been constrained by the global financial crisis.

Through the Bank Exposure Support Transaction (BEST) structure, IFC will provide Unibanco with $50 million in funding guaranteed by three international banks. The guarantees allow the international banks to assume Unibanco’s credit risk without having to use their own liquidity in the transaction. IFC will also provide $10 million of non-guaranteed funding to Unibanco as part of the structure.


“As a result of the global financial crisis, concerns about availability of liquidity may prevent international banks from lending even to sound emerging-market borrowers,” said Jyrki Koskelo, IFC’s Vice President for Europe, Central Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean, and Global Financial Markets. “The structure used in this transaction represents an innovative response to that situation.”


Daniel Gleizer, Head of Treasury at Unibanco, said: “This transaction will represent the first international syndicated financing in the public markets for a Brazilian bank or private sector borrower since the deterioration in global financial markets late last year. We are delighted to have worked with IFC on this first-of-its-kind initiative, and appreciative of the support offered by our traditional partners Calyon, Commerzbank, and LBBW.”


The development of products like the BEST structure highlights concrete responses by IFC to ameliorate the effects of the global financial crisis on its emerging markets clients, particularly in lower-income countries. Other new IFC initiatives include bank recapitalization, increased provision of trade finance, infrastructure funding, microfinance, lending to small and medium enterprises, and crisis-oriented advisory services.



About IFC

IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development, mobilizing private capital, and providing advisory and risk mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments totaled $16.2 billion in fiscal 2008, a 34 percent increase over the previous year. For more information, visit
www.ifc.org.
 
For more information about IFC’s crisis response, visit
www.ifc.org/crisisresponse

About Unibanco

Unibanco is currently one of the largest Brazilian banks, with more than 80 years of market experience. Today it is present in all financial market segments, offering a complete and diversified services portfolio to a broad clientele. Unibanco’s financial strength is supported not only by its strong Retail business, but also by operations in five other main target segments: Corporate Bank, Treasury, Insurance, Asset Management, and Investment Banking.


In November Unibanco announced a merger with Itaś, subject to approval by the Central Bank of Brazil, thus becoming one of the 20th largest global financial institutions, with $250 billion in assets.


For more information on Unibanco please visit
www.ri.unibanco.com.br/ing