SingPost – BT

SingPost issuing $200m notes

Due 2020 and in $250,000 units, they will pay interest of 3.5% per annum

SINGAPORE Post plans to issue $200 million of fixed-rate notes, partly to capitalise on investment opportunities.

The notes, due 2020 and denominated in $250,000 units, will be cleared through the Central Depository, SingPost said yesterday. They will pay interest of 3.5 per cent per annum, semi-annually. The expected issue date is March 30.

‘As part of our growth strategy, we have been exploring investment and business opportunities in Singapore and the region,’ said SingPost’s deputy group chief executive and covering CEO Ng Hin Lee. ‘The notes provide us with ready financial capacity to fund any investment opportunities that may arise.’

Net proceeds from the issue will also be used for capital expenditure and working capital requirements.

DBS Bank and UBS have been appointed joint lead managers for the notes, which have been rated AA- by Standard & Poor’s.

S&P has also affirmed its AA- long-term corporate credit rating on SingPost – but revised its rating outlook from stable to negative.

‘We revised the outlook to negative to reflect SingPost’s weaker credit protection metrics for the next two years and uncertainty over the outcome of the company’s M&A activities,’ said S&P credit analyst Andrew Wong.

SingPost’s efforts to boost shareholder returns by venturing into more competitive, lower-margin businesses such as hybrid mail and logistics may result in the company taking longer than expected to repair its credit metrics, Mr Wong said.

SingPost’s move is the latest in a string of note issues.

Recently, Temasek Holdings sold $1 billion of notes due 2020, as part of its US$10 billion guaranteed global medium-term note programme.

In February, Singapore Press Holdings said that it was issuing $300 million of fixed-rate notes due 2015 as the first part of a new $1 billion multi-currency, medium-term note programme.

And in January, Sembcorp Marine quadrupled its multi-currency programme from $500 million to $2 billion.

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