NDB Investment Bank (NDBIB) has asserted its dominance as the market leader for investment banking in Sri Lanka through a momentous year in the country’s capital markets. NDBIB advised on a record Rs75 billion in capital market transactions, including nearly Rs50 billion via debt capital markets, Rs22 billion in public and private equity transactions and a host of M&A transactions valued at Rs3 billion.
NDBIB’s ability to successfully execute record volumes of transactions through multiple lockdowns, numerous other pandemic related hindrances and volatile macro-economic conditions bear testament to its market leadership.
NDBIB acted as Financial Advisor to a record-breaking five public equity offerings (four IPOs and the only Secondary Public Offering this year) raising nearly Rs8 billion, the largest number of transactions amongst Sri Lankan investment banks. These transactions included the Initial Public Offering of hSenid Business Solutions Limited IPO, which witnessed the highest level of oversubscription in recent times of 13.5x and three oversubscribed public equity offerings in the banks and diversified financials sectors, despite the challenging macro-economic environment. It is worth noting that NDBIB used tactical placement and distribution strategies to cater to the nuances of each public equity offering, resulting in healthy demand from the target investor segments.
NDBIB was once again acclaimed for its track record of excellence by securing the award for “Sri Lanka’s Best Investment Bank” by Euromoney Magazine for the 10th consecutive year and the award for “Best Corporate and Investment Bank” by the Asiamoney Awards for the 5th consecutive year during the year 2021. NDBIB remains the only investment bank in the country to be recognised by Euromoney Magazine.
NDBIB also acted as Financial Advisor to raise a massive Rs9.5 billion capital raise for its ultimate parent, NDB Bank via a rights issue and a private placement. This share issuance included a dual-tranche investment from Norfund, the Norwegian Investment Fund for Developing Countries, through the rights issue and a concurrent private placement that established Norfund as the single largest shareholder of NDB Bank with a stake of 9.99%. This was also incidentally Norfund’s first equity investment in the country.
NDBIB also recently announced the signing of an SSPA to divest 100% of the shares of SLT Campus Pvt Ltd, a fully owned subsidiary of Sri Lanka Telecom PLC, the 5th M&A deal executed by the team for the year. NDBIB reaffirmed its market leadership in the M&A space with deals completed across the renewable energy, consumer staples and education sectors during the year, in addition to numerous ongoing transactions in a range of sectors which are expected to be completed in early 2022.
Sri Lanka’s debt capital markets thrived in 2021, with the historically low interest rate environment providing companies with the opportunity to raise extraordinary amounts of capital. NDBIB was responsible for several of the largest debt raises of the year and created opportunities for both the issuers of debt and investors to enjoy exceptional returns via exemplary structuring. These included an Rs10 billion listed debenture issue by LOLC Holdings PLC, arranging a $35 million facility for National Savings Bank, an Rs11.5 billion unlisted debenture issue for National Savings Bank and an Rs8 billion listed debenture issue for NDB Bank. It is also noteworthy that each debt raise concluded by NDBIB during the year witnessed healthy oversubscription levels.
NDBIB has been able to leverage the strength of the NDB Group in deal sourcing, participation and facilitation. A case in point is IPO transactions, where NDBIB acts as financial advisor whilst the rest of the group offers underwriting services, cash management, distribution and anchor investments to build a solid order book. NDBIB also expanded its team strength with new recruitments during the year aimed at building on its stellar performance for 2021 and executing a wide variety of transactions that are in the deal pipeline for the year 2022.