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Best sukuk house: HSBC Amanah

Pushing beyond the boundaries

HSBC Amanah is not be the biggest bookrunner of sukuk deals but it’s the only bank that consistently wins mandates in both the Middle East and Asia. Last year it ranked only fourth in the league tables, according to Ifis, but the three institutions above it have a more limited business.

Only one of leading underwriter CIMB’s 36 deals was for a borrower outside Malaysia, and second-ranked Dubai Islamic Bank’s successes were restricted to Dubai. Barclays Capital, which ranked third, owed its position to two record-breaking transactions for subsidiaries of the same group: Dubai Ports and Nakheel, which are part of Dubai World. HSBC Amanah, however, can point to successes in Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Malaysia.

The bank’s most eye-catching transaction was Malaysian investment company Khazanah’s $750 million, five-year sukuk, which was the first Shariah-compliant exchangeable bond. The bonds are potentially exchangeable into the shares of Telekom Malaysia. The deal proved a hit. The final issue size was a 50% increase on the original amount offered.

Another landmark transaction was Sabic’s SAR3 billion ($800 million), five-year Islamic bond, for which HSBC acted as sole bookrunner and lead manager.

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