Poland: Polish companies set for debt funding spree
Energy sector to lead the way; Increase in ratings enquiries
Polish high-grade corporates are set to access the international bond markets in record numbers over the next six months, amid a much-needed overhaul of the country’s infrastructure.
Tauron Polska Energia, Poland’s second-largest energy supplier (rated BBB by Fitch), has announced plans for a €500 million global debut in 2011, while larger counterpart PGE (A3 Moody’s/BBB+ Fitch) has indicated that it might look to external investors to achieve its Z39 billion ($12.3 billion) funding target by the end of 2012. State-owned gas company PGNiG (Baa1 Moody’s/BBB+ S&P) also confirmed at the start of September that it intended to place a €500 million five-year deal in the first quarter of next year.
The issues will offer a unique opportunity for international investors. Traditionally, Polish companies have had little need of bond markets, either domestic or global, thanks to a highly liquid banking sector. According to Dealogic data, Polish investment-grade corporates have issued just €2.78 billion on the global market since 2000 – of which 86.8% was accounted for by TPSA, a telecoms operator part-owned by France Telecom.
But Piotr Kowalski, head of Fitch Ratings in Warsaw, says this will have to change if companies are to meet their funding requirements.