Mumbai: Country’s largest telecom operator Bharti Airtel has raised CHF 350 million (Rs 2,453.2 crore) through issue of bonds in the Swiss market, mopping up funds for the third time in this fiscal from overseas.
The proceeds will be used to refiance its existing debt.
The company said in a statement that “its wholly-owned subsidiary Bharti Airtel International (Netherlands) BV has successfully priced CHF 350 million 3 per cent guaranteed senior notes due March 31, 2020.”
The bonds have been issued for a six-year period at an interest rate of 3 per cent.
“The notes have been priced at 230 basis points over six year CHF mid swaps with a fixed coupon of 3 per cent per annum to yield 2.98 per cent,” the company said in a statement.
The company said BNP, Deutsche Bank and UBS acted as joint lead managers on the offering.
“The notes received considerable investor interest, witnessing a strong and balanced demand across high quality institutional investors and Swiss private banks, highlighting the broad support base that the Bharti credit has attracted,” the statement added.
“At CHF 350 million this is the largest ever bond offering by a domestic entity in the Swiss debt market,” Deutsche Bank India head (financing) Randhir Singh told PTI in Mumbai.
Singh said the current issue received an overwhelming investor response and “we continue to see strong demand for quality Indian names in the global debt markets.”
In December 2013, the Sunil Mittal-led firm had raised euro 750 million (about Rs 6,350 crore) in the first such bond issue by an corporate and received bids worth euro 3.8 billion.
The company than re-opened the issue in January and raised 250 million euros.
In March 2013, the company had raised USD 1.5 billion in overseas debt in two tranches. Bharti Airtel had net debt of Rs 57,643 crore in December 2013.
“It is extremely heartening to have a third listing of our credit in just one year with yet another largest debut issuance from India. With this issuance, Bharti now has the largest debut USD, EURO and CHF denominated bond issuances by an Indian issuer ever,” Bharti Airtel Group Treasurer Harjeet Kohli said in the statement.
In 2013, domestic corporates and financial institutions had raised a record USD 16 billion in international debt, up 60 per cent from 2012.
The overseas fund raising had ebbed following the May 24 tapering talk by the US Fed, which spiked interest rates in Western markets. Since then there were only a few issues including HDFC Bank’s USD 500 million in October and ICICI Bank’s USD 750 million in December.
Shares of the company today settled 0.37 per cent higher at Rs 300.90 apiece on the BSE.