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Privatbank poised to issue Ukraine’s first ABS

In what will be a landmark transaction, Privatbank, Ukraine’s biggest bank, is poised to be the country’s first issuer of an asset-backed securitization.

According to market sources, it is one of two deals being tipped as close to being finalized, with a transaction by Ukrsotsbank also in the pipeline. This activity is indicative of intense interest from Ukrainian banks in raising funds in the capital markets to finance their growing loan portfolios.

“Privatbank is definitely on track for the securitization,” says an investment bank analyst in the Ukraine. “There is no time line, but I would not be surprised if the deal was launched in January or February.”

The deal will probably be backed by a portfolio of consumer or auto loans. The size of the issue has not been determined but the analyst estimates that it will be between $130 million and $250 million. Ukrsotsbank is believed to be close to finalizing a consumer loans securitization. Both Privatbank and Ukrsotsbank declined to comment on these potential transactions.

Privatbank had already unofficially announced a launch for its deal in October before it became subject to delays, and most observers reckon it will be the first to come to market. But others are less certain. “I am not so sure whether Privatbank will be the first bank to issue a securitization,” says Olekandr Kurdydyk, a senior associate at DLA Piper, an international law firm with an office in Kiev.

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