Lukashenko says he may quit as president
Belarus hits EU with tit-for-tat sanctions
Belarusian police introduce colour-coded torture system for detained protesters
Kremlin publicly condemns Belarusian police brutality in hint of growing frustration with Lukashenko
Russian services PMI rises to 48.2, but remains underwater as recovery continues to slow
Russia to start mass vaccinations on December 7
Azerbaijan’s Aliyev calls on Armenia, Russia, Turkey and Iran to assist in creating Nakhchivan land corridor
FPRI BMB Russia: Sberbank releases a three-year transformation strategy to e-commerce concern
Ukraine’s banking sector continues recovery, but profits still lagging last year
Ukraine’s real wages up over 10% in October but have been stagnant in dollar terms for almost a year
FPRI BMB Ukraine: Public has confused opinions on resolving the Donbas conflict
Western Balkans plus Ukraine subsidised coal with over €900mn in 2018-2019
Estonian parcel robot firm Cleveron eyes €30mn state loan
Estonia’s chief auditor says €1bn in state COVID-19 loans issued haphazardly
Economic sentiment in CEE falls in November as recovery momentum splutters
Estonian animation studio Imepilt to hold IPO
Brighter days ahead: The economic bounce back in 2021
Central, Southeast Europe stock markets jump in anticipation of COVID-free future
VISEGRAD BLOG: An easing of trade tensions but still an uncertain situation for export-oriented Central Europe
Hungary's PM risks isolation as Poland mulls dropping EU budget veto
Poland ready to back down from veto of EU budget
Hungary's ruling party in damage control mode after MEP sex scandal bombshell
Poland’s PMI remains stuck just above the improvement line at 50.8 in November
Czech companies dominate this year’s Deloitte Technology Fast 50 CE
Coronacrisis to get worse before it gets better forecasts wiiw
EU diplomats say no chance of Bulgaria removing veto for Skopje to start EU accession talks
IMF says downside risks to Albanian economy are increasing
EU ministers fail to agree on launch of accession talks with Albania and North Macedonia
Western Balkans commit to green agenda and regional common market at Sofia summit
Bosnia’s opposition ousts nationalist parties in major cities
Bosnia’s main ethnic parties fight to hold onto power in local elections
Southeast Europe’s EU members to get biggest boost from next budget and recovery funds
Bulgaria imposes 3-week lockdown to slow down COVID-19 spread
CEE politicians highlight trade and security ties as they congratulate Biden
Breakaway Transnistria fully under Sheriff’s control as Obnovlenie party sweeps board in parliament election
Moldova’s presidential election is over, now the battle for the parliament begins
Moldova’s foreign policy reset
Russian establishment quick to congratulate Moldova's new president-elect
Rising COVID-19 cases put intense pressure on CEE healthcare systems
MEPs urge European Commission to act against Hungarian media financing in North Macedonia and Slovenia
North Macedonia mulls decriminalising cannabis to boost tourism
Retail surpass pre-crisis peak as Romanians shop instead of holiday
Romania’s stability election
Romanian venture capital firm Catalyst launches new €40mn-50mn fund for TMT
The state is back in business
Slovenian PM Jansa stands alongside Hungary and Poland in EU rule of law row
BEYOND THE BOSPORUS: Turkish number crunchers deliver November inflation surprise of 14%
Erdogan needs to go says analyst assessing Turkey’s economic collapse
Ukraine strikes deal with Turkey to produce killer drones instrumental in Karabakh conflict
In Karabakh deal, as many questions as answers
Protesters flood Yerevan demanding Armenia’s “traitor” PM quit over Nagorno-Karabakh surrender
Who emerge as the real winners from the bloody Nagorno-Karabakh conflict?
Below average 2020 wine production destined for volatile and uncertain global market
Iran calls on Saudis to limit $67bn defence spending to Tehran’s $10bn
Iranian prosecutors pledge to pursue Trump for Soleimani killing even after he leaves White House
No reaction from Kazakh elites as bombshell FT report says Nazarbayev’s son in law siphoned millions from pipeline scheme
UK court freezes $5bn in assets connected to fugitive Kazakh banker Ablyazov
Attack of the Debt Tsunami: global debt soars to a new all-time high
Kyrgyzstan's proposed new constitution provokes widespread revulsion
Kyrgyzstan's China debt: Between crowdfunding and austerity
CFC joins RWC in assessing KAZ Minerals buyout offer as under-valuation
China business briefing: Not happy with Kyrgyzstan
Mongolian coal exports to China paralysed as Beijing demands virus testing of truck drivers
Mongolia fears economic damage as country faces up to its first local transmissions of coronavirus
Mongolia in lockdown after suffering first local coronavirus transmissions
Mongolia’s wrestling culture: From the grasslands to the cage
No surprises in Tajikistan as Rahmon retains presidency with 91% of vote
A Tajikistan poised on verge of economic calamity set for vote
Tajikistan revives on-off dispute with Iran
Turkmenistan: The dammed united
Turkmenistan: Everybody yurts, sometimes
Dirty money investigation reviews identified payments worth $1.4bn linked to Turkmenistan
Uzbekistan unveils extensive privatisation programme
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Ulker Biskuvi (ULKER), Turkey’s leading confectionery maker owned by Yildiz Holding, has mandated Merrill Lynch, JPMorgan and HSBC to hold investor meetings from October 19 in the UK and US to sell eurobonds, the company said on October 19 in a stock exchange filing.
The ultimate decision on whether to move ahead with a bond issuance and the amount and terms of the issue will be determined based on market conditions after the investor meetings, it added.
Ulker is looking to sell 5-year or 7-year USD papers, unnamed bankers told Reuters on October 20.
On October 16, Ulker said it has received approval from the Turkish Capital Markets Board (SPK) to sell up to $750mn of papers abroad.
Three days later, Fitch Ratings assigned a first-time rating of ‘BB-(EXP/Expected)-Negative’, three notches below investment grade to Ulker and its upcoming senior unsecured eurobonds. It was issued in parallel with Turkey’s sovereign rating and country ceiling. The assignment of final ratings will be contingent on the receipt of final documents conforming to information already received and the refinancing of a syndicated loan due in November 2020 with eurobond proceeds, Fitch noted.
In April, Ulker renewed a 3-year $375mn loan with a 121% rollover rate. Like that loan, its $450mn syndicated loan, mentioned by Fitch, was signed in 2017.
Also on October 19, Standard & Poor’s assigned a first-time rating of B+/Stable, four notches below investment grade, to Ulker and its upcoming paper in parallel to Turkey’s sovereign rating.
Ulker’s sizable cash deposit held at the ultimate parent company, Yildiz Holding, mitigates refinancing risks and Yildiz Holding does not negatively affect Ulker's credit standing, in S&P’s view.
S&P also noted that Ulker will use the proceedings from eurobonds to refinance its Turkish lira (TRY) 3.7bn worth of debt, 43% of the company’s total debt, due November this year.
In 2006, Ulker said in a stock exchange filing that it established a Luxemburg-based subsidiary, namely Ulker Finance SA, and it mandated ABN Amro and Dresdner Kleinwort to sell eurobonds.
However, the auction was not held and subsequently Ulker Finance appeared to have been liquidated.
In 2018, Yildiz struck a deal for Turkey’s largest ever debt restructuring, covering $6.5bn of debt. It restructured the debt again, in August this year.
Turkey’s two eurobond deals this year—both of them sovereign—compare with as many as 18 in a normal year, Mustafa Bagriacik of JPMorgan told Bloomberg on October 20.
'More of a cost concern'
“Corporate issuances are more of a cost concern rather than a matter of accessibility. We have a strong pipeline for the upcoming period,” Bagriacik added.
JP was among the bookrunners for the Turkish Treasury’s latest $2.5bn 5-year auction, which priced at more than 600bp higher than US Treasuries.
On October 20, BloombergHT reported that the Turkey Wealth Fund (TWF/TVF), had cancelled an auction for the sale of 5-year USD eurobonds after holding investor meetings on October 13.
Asked for yields over the sovereign from investors were higher than Turkish officials expected, a person familiar with the matter told Bloomberg News. TVF was set up as a sovereign wealth fund (SWF) by Ankara even though Turkey lacks vast natural resources to generate profits for it, the usual process that a country pursues with an SWF. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan sits at the head of the fund.
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