(Bloomberg) — Porsche Automobil Holding SE has smashed records in the Schuldschein market on its debut, borrowing €2.7 billion ($2.9 billion) in the largest-ever deal for the German debt.
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The offering this month, which was initially marketed at only €500 million, pulled in about 120 investors including European, Asian and American banks, pension funds and insurers. It shows enduring demand for anything related to the sports car marquee, after Porsche AG’s stock offering last year was Europe’s biggest in a decade.
It also signals that Schuldschein debt, which is syndicated like both loans and bonds, is turning from a niche German instrument into an increasingly popular funding option for big European companies. Porsche’s sale was nearly a tenth of all of 2022’s market, and deal sizes are growing across the board.
“We liked the lean structure and the short time to market Schuldschein,” said a spokesperson for Porsche Automobil Holding. “We are planning for further financing, either via bonds or a mix of instruments, and maybe a second Schuldschein.”
The market saw roughly 35 international companies outside its non-core markets of Austria, Germany and Switzerland in 2022, two-thirds more than the previous year. Last year’s €7.2 billion sales for these foreign borrowers — including the likes of Konecranes Oyj, Acciona SA and CEZ AS — was the second highest after 2019’s record €10.3 billion.
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The Porsche Automobil Holding debut follows a record number of investment-grade firms issuing such debt last year, helping the market to a total €33 billion of sales. The number of debuts also more than doubled, including the likes of EnBW Energie Baden-Wuerttemberg AG and Vonovia SE.
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Liquidity is strong enough that average deal sizes jumped to more than €207 million in 2022 from the previous year’s €172 million. That’s coming off the back of a year that saw public debt markets roiled by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
“We see a very successful market start in 2023, mainly driven by strong German credits,” said Willi Doerges, director of corporate finance with debt capital markets at Landesbank Baden-Wuerttemberg. “From our view all credit and debt capital market instruments currently see a good reception from investors and lenders alike.”
Proceeds from Porsche Automobil Holding’s borrowing will help repay a bridge loan the firm obtained last year to purchase 25% plus one share of Dr. Ing. h.c.F. Porsche. The deal, led by Deutsche Bank AG, ING Bank NV, LBBW, and UniCredit SpA, easily tops German auto-parts maker ZF Friedrichshafen AG’s €2.2 billion transaction in 2015.
(Updates investor details, market data throughout, adds credit news.)
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