Debt market round-up: Full version of efunding launched
One year on from its prototype of efunding, Ekportfinans has launched the full version of its electronic funding platform, an innovative approach by the Norwegian export financing agency to operating its structured medium term note funding operation.
Because the borrower has placed its funding targets for various structures directly onto efunding, dealers can transact automatically with Ekportfinans via the internet application. This dramatically speeds up transactions, making it far more efficient to fund using smaller highly structured notes because it reduces the level of human interaction and therefore the scope for mistakes.
Smaller structured notes provide the best cost of funds for borrowers. However, with more than $4 billion annually to raise, Ekportfinans has had to rely on larger benchmarks for volume. If even moderately successful, the new system – the brainwave of Soren Elbech, deputy director of finance and head of capital markets – will dramatically cut the agency’s funding costs.