Hellenic Petroleum Selling Debut Bond as Frigoglass Hires Banks
Hellenic Petroleum SA (ELPE) increased the size of its debut bond while Greek refrigerator equipment supplier Frigoglass SA (FRIGO) is also planning its first note sale, as investors seeking riskier assets boost demand for securities from Europe’s most indebted nation.
Greece’s largest refiner is now looking to raise 500 million euros ($654 million) from four-year bonds, following an initial offering of 400 million euros, according to people familiar with the deal. Frigoglass has hired banks to arrange investor meetings and a bond sale may follow, the Athens-based company said in a statement on its website today.
Confidence in Greece is returning after the country’s parliament passed a bill that includes firing 15,000 workers, a condition set by international lenders to unlock 2.8 billion euros of aid. Yields on speculative-grade company bonds fell to a record 5.22 percent, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s Euro High Yield Constrained Index.
“Investors are seeing plenty of reasons to move into these Greek securities, one of them being the scramble for yield,” said Suki Mann, London-based head of credit strategy at Societe Generale SA. “The market is also choosing to see Greece getting its next aid tranche as a positive.”
Hellenic Petroleum’s bonds, which are expected to price today, will yield 8 percent, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the terms are private. Alpha Bank, Credit Suisse Group AG, Eurobank, HSBC Holdings Plc and NBG Securities are managing the sale.
Vasilis Tsaitas, a spokesman for Hellenic Petroleum in Athens, declined to comment because a formal announcement will be made after the deal has priced.
Hellenic Petroleum is the first Greek company to sell bonds since Hellenic Telecommunications Organization SA (HTO) sold 700 million euros of five-year securities in January.
Frigoglass has hired Citigroup Global Markets Ltd. and HSBC to arrange the investor meetings, the company said in the statement. It would be the first bond sale for the supplier, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
“The fact that there are Greek companies that can tap the market is significant,” said Gabriel Sterne, an economist at Exotix Ltd., a London-based brokerage. “These kinds of deals may be a precursor of green shoots appearing.”
To contact the reporter on this story: Katie Linsell in London at firstname.lastname@example.org