Standard Chartered maintained its steady performance in a challenging year for Indian loans, executing more deals than any other international player and engineering innovative transactions in both the offshore and onshore markets.
Underpinned by strong origination, structuring and distribution capabilities, StanChart made full use of its unparalleled access to investors in 2017. It harnessed new pools of liquidity for Indian borrowers – including banks from Sri Lanka, which committed around US$95m in three deals this year – and was a constant feature on the landmark deals of the year.
“Our unique franchise, where we are active across both foreign currency and Indian rupee loans, gives us a different perspective, allowing us to combine international expertise and local market knowledge to deliver innovative financing proposals for our clients,” said Amit Lakhwani, head of loan syndicate and distribution for Asia.
“We played a leadership role in all of the significant transactions completed in the market during the review period and are a go-to bank for our core clients seeking solutions to their fundraising needs.”
StanChart provided leadership in several marquee transactions, including the US$1.8bn senior secured term loan for Novelis – the largest transaction in the corporate high-yield space from India this year – as well as the US$651m refinancing for London-listed Vedanta Resources’ wholly owned subsidiary Twin Star Holdings after its merger with Cairn India Holdings. Towards the end of the review period, the bank launched a £640m (US$850m) refinancing for Tata Motors, having secured another high-profile mandate from a top-tier borrower.
Although refinancings dominated the Indian market in 2017, StanChart was also involved in some of the more structured transactions. The bank put together a hybrid, revolver-style sponsor financing for Adani Global, backing multiple solar power projects with a US$250m three-year package comprised of trade, term debt and share-backed financings. The deal was structured in a fashion that enabled the group to place bulk orders for equipment ahead of financial close, thereby avoiding delays and achieving savings on equipment costs.
StanChart was also one of the original mandated leads on a US$394.3m acquisition loan backing Mu Sigma founder Dhiraj Rajaram’s purchase of an additional stake in the Indian consulting firm. The deal raised US$330m in syndication from lenders across India, Europe, Australia and Taiwan.
In the rupee market, StanChart completed a Rs30.25m (US$469m) 12-year financing, considered the biggest Indian rupee deal in the lease rent discounting space, for DLF Group, the country’s largest commercial real estate developer. The deal help the borrower save approximately 1% per annum on over US$1bn of borrowings.
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