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.
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
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
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