Head of TreasuryContact
Hamburg Commercial Bank recently caused quite a positive stir with its Ship Pfandbrief. Ralf Löwe, Head of Treasury, has now explained in an interview with the trade journal "Immobilien & Finanzierung" what opportunities Pfandbriefe offer to investors and which goals HCOB has set for itself for this special kind of refinancing.
This was definitely what you would call a "successful premiere". In mid-May, Hamburg Commercial Bank issued a Ship Pfandbrief on the capital market for the first time – and it was a complete success: The ship mortgage-backed corporate bond with a volume of 500 million euros and a term of three years, as well as a coupon of 1.375 per cent, was placed primarily in Germany, but also in Scandinavia and Great Britain.
"Our Ship Pfandbrief has been well received by the capital market – we were pleased about that," says Ralf Löwe, Head of Treasury at Hamburg Commercial Bank, in the July issue of the trade magazine "Immobilien & Finanzierung". He went on to explain: "Pfandbriefe are highly rated by investors due to their security and transparency, which is also regularly demonstrated by the placement of our Mortgage Pfandbriefe. We were therefore not surprised that the Ship Pfandbrief also did well. Nevertheless, the Ship Pfandbrief is new territory for many investors, and therefore the circle of interested parties is still limited."
For HCOB, the issue of the Ship Pfandbrief in mid-May is also a kind of new start. Ralf Löwe: "It was important for us to position Hamburg Commercial Bank – after successful privatization and completed transformation – as a regular issuer in the Pfandbrief market once again. After issuing a seven-year Mortgage Pfandbrief in October last year, and a five-year Mortgage Pfandbrief in January 2022, both in the benchmark format, issuing a Ship Pfandbrief in the first half of this year was the next logical step for us."
In recent years, the market for Ship Pfandbriefe has been rather quiet overall. But that could now change. Löwe: "We are planning on going to market regularly with more benchmark bonds in the future, and we are confident that the Ship Pfandbrief will re-establish itself."
Hamburg Commercial Bank has a unique selling point in Germany when it comes to issuing Ship Pfandbriefe: "At the moment, no other German bank is placing such bonds covered by ship loans onto the capital market. Even in the European region, only one other issuer regularly issues large-volume ship covered bonds in the Eurobond market."
Investors appreciate the security based on the German Pfandbrief Act and the Pfandbrief's impeccable credit history, regardless of the type. Investors primarily include central banks, credit institutions, asset managers, insurance companies and pension funds.