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Wed 23 Feb 2011 05:03 PM

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Abu Dhabi’s IPIC eyes bond sale after Cepsa buy

IPIC to hold investor meetings in cities including London, Amsterdam and Paris

Abu Dhabi’s IPIC eyes bond sale after Cepsa buy
BRITISH POUNDS: Abu Dhabi’s IPIC may sell bonds in euros and pounds following investor meetings in cities including London, Amsterdam and Paris

Abu Dhabi’s International Petroleum Investment Co may sell bonds in euros and pounds following investor meetings in cities including London, Amsterdam and Paris starting February 28, according to three people with knowledge of the sale.

Goldman Sachs Group, Banco Santander, BNP Paribas, Credit Agricole, Deutsche Bank and UniCredit are arranging the meetings, the people said. IPIC is owned by the Abu Dhabi government.

IPIC raised $2.5bn in a debut offering of five- and 10-year dollar bonds in November. The $1bn of five-year, 3.125 percent bonds were priced to yield 195 basis points above similar-maturity US Treasuries and the $1.5bn of 10- year, 5 percent-coupon notes were priced at a yield spread of 245 basis points over Treasuries, the company said November 16. The yield on the five-year notes fell 4 basis points to 4.009 percent at 1:36 pm in Abu Dhabi. They hit a record-high 4.045 percent on Tuesday, according to Bloomberg composite prices.

The company agreed February 16 to pay Total €3.97bn ($5.37bn) for it 48.8 percent share of Cia. Espanola de Petroleos, Spain’s second-largest oil company. IPIC already owned 47 percent of Cepsa. The acquisition will give Abu Dhabi processing capacity for the UAE’s 2.4 million barrels a day of crude oil production.

Moody’s Investors Service has rated IPIC’s bonds Aa3, its fourth-highest investment grade, one step lower than Abu Dhabi’s level. The discrepancy was meant to reflect the “the absence of an explicit formal agreement obligating the government to support under all circumstances,” Moody’s said when assigning the credit rating in Novemeber.

IPIC, set up by the Abu Dhabi government in 1984 to invest in oil and gas business around the world, has $14bn of investments which include stakes in 14 separate companies, according to the company’s website.