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India’s largest port operator buoyed by $500m bond

The Singapore-listed offering was reportedly over-subscribed by 129 institutional investors from across the globe.

Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone has issued $500 million worth of dollar-denominated bonds on the Singapore Exchange Securities in a bid to refinance its existing debt at a lower cost. 

The security carries an interest rate of 3.95 percent, with a five-year tenor. This is the second foreign currency offering by Adani Ports, following a previous $650 million issuance in 2015. 

The company received total orders twice the size of the issue, enlisting the support of 129 institutional investors from Asia, Europe, the US and Africa, according to local reports. These included asset managers, insurers, banks and sovereign funds. 

Adani Ports had not responded to requests for comment at press time. 

A subsidiary of the eponymous Indian conglomerate, Adani is the country’s largest private developer and operator of ports and related infrastructure. It runs eight ports and terminals, with two others currently under construction. 

The company is rated Baa3 by Moody’s and BBB- by S&P, a grade that transferred to the bond it just issued. Bookrunners for the transaction comprised Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Barclays, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Emirates NBD, SBI Holdings and Standard Chartered Bank. 

Moody’s said in a note released last week that the company’s rating is under pressure “due to a lower growth trajectory from slower shipment volumes, particularly coal”.   

India has 12 major and 200 smaller ports, according to the government-run India Brand Equity Foundation. The trust cites statistics from the Ministry of Shipping and points out that around 95 percent of India’s trading by volume and 70 percent by value is done through maritime transport.