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Pfandbrief roundtable: New issuers search for a niche in the market

Pfandbrief-style debt is emerging from countries all over Europe, bringing new forms of collateral and legal structures to a market traditionally dominated by German issuers. The new issuers have attracted some new buyers, but are still finding it difficult to tap into investor bases in the US and Asia, partly because of euro weakness. Euromoney.com went behind the scenes at the International Bond Congress to ask some of the biggest German and non-German covered bond issuers what they want from arranging banks and how they are building investor confidence in their products. This roundtable first appeared on the internet at www.euromoney.com/pfandbriefe.

       
Facing, from left to right: Rudiger Luchmann, Rheinhyp;Carlos
Contreras, Caja Madrid; Pierre Laprade, CFF; Christof Schornig,
PBI; Jurgen Vogel, Commerzbank. Backs to camera, from left to
right: Katie Astbury, Euromoney.com; Stephan Kaiser,
Commerzbank; Matthew Ball, Euromoney.com.




Are new foreign covered bond issuers competition for Rheinhyp, or are they an enhancement of the market?

Rüdiger Luchmann: I think both are true. They are looking for the same investors that we are looking for. I think it is a challenge for the German Pfandbrief. We are in a very strong position, but that doesn't mean that we can stand still. We have to try to be in the centre of the capital markets in the future.


Competition is there for the German Pfandbrief, but I don't think that we are in danger that we will lose our strong position in euroland.


So what are you going to have to do to compete with them? Perhaps introduce more flexibility in the collateral you can use to back your deals?

Rüdiger Luchmann: I think the collateral at the moment gives us a lot of flexibility in the primary and secondary markets to build a high-quality collateral pool.




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