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DBS SETS UP DEDICATED PROJECT FINANCE TEAM 

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 New unit will enable bank to better serve corporate and sovereign customers as a fast-developing Asia invests to build up infrastructure

SINGAPORE, 21 April 2010 - DBS Bank, Southeast Asia’s largest bank, announced today that it has established a dedicated project finance team to better meet the needs of corporate and sovereign customers as a fast-developing Asia invests to build up its infrastructure.

Project finance is not new to DBS. As early as 2003, DBS was sole arranger and underwriter for Singapore’s first desalination plant, a project undertaken by Hyflux Ltd. Since then, DBS has extended its reach beyond Singapore and into the region. Across Asia, DBS has been involved as Mandated Lead Arranger for over USD 2.5 billion in project finance transactions in the last two years. This placed DBS consistently among the top 15 Mandated Lead Arrangers in the Asia Pacific (ex-Australasia) in 2008 and 2009.

While DBS has been an active participant in the project finance space across various industries, the bank is now setting up a dedicated team to further increase focus on the business and to better service customers amid growing demand for project financing in Asia. The team is led by Lim Wee Seng, Managing Director (Project Finance), at DBS. Lim reports to Amos Tan, Managing Director (Energy, Chemicals, Infrastructure), Institutional Banking Group.

DBS said that with economic development in Asia, there will be rapid growth in infrastructure and strong demand for energy/ resources in many of DBS’ key growth markets, including China, India and Indonesia.

According to The Asian Development Bank, it is estimated that infrastructure investment in Asia will be USD 750 billion per year from 2010-2020. In particular, India and Indonesia are projected to make significant investments over the next few years to increase their power generation capacity so as to meet domestic consumption needs.

Said Lim: "With the growing demand for infrastructure, energy and natural resource flows across Asia, companies are increasingly looking to invest in Asia’s growth through the development of large scale projects. We see significant opportunities for DBS arising from these developments and believe this potential would be better captured by a dedicated PF team, due to the capital and time-intensive nature of arranging and executing typically long-tenure PF deals. As an Asian bank, DBS believes our deep understanding of this region, regional connectivity and longstanding involvement in the project finance space makes us strong partners for our clients as they expand in Asia.”

Notable project finance and structured finance transactions by DBS include: 

In Singapore

  • Sole Bookrunner, Sole Underwriter and Mandated Lead Arranger for YTL’s SGD 2.25 billion term loan facilities for the acquisition of PowerSeraya in 2009
  • Mandated Lead Arranger in the SGD 2.35 billion facility raised by Lion Power consortium to refinance the acquisition loan for Senoko Power. This deal was awarded PFI’s Power Deal of the Year (2009) and Euroweek’s Asia Pacific Project Finance Deal of the Year (2009)
  • Mandated Lead Arranger in SGD 2.25 billion facility raised by China’s Huaneng Group for the acquisition of Tuas Power in 2008
  • Co-ordinating Arranger and Bookrunner for Marina Bay Sands’ SGD 5.4 billion syndicated loan in 2008
  • Mandated Lead Arranger and Bookrunner for Resorts World Sentosa’s (RWS) SGD 4.1 billion transaction. The RWS project was named “Asia-Pacific Leisure Deal of the Year” by PFI and “Asia-Pacific project financing deal of the year” by Euroweek in 2008

Elsewhere in the region

Indonesia

  • Mandated Lead Arranger for Profesional Telekomunikasi’s term loan of USD 360 million to acquire a portfolio of wireless telecommunications infrastructure from Hutchison Telecom. Successfully arranged in November 2008, the deal was then the largest telecom tower financing to date in Southeast Asia, and won Euromoney’s Asia Pacific Telecoms Deal of the Year in 2008
  • Mandated Lead Arranger for a USD 300 million structured syndicated facility for PT Saptaindra Sejati, one of Indonesia’s largest coal mining contractors in 2008
  • Mandated Lead Arranger and Bookrunner for Chandra Asri’s USD 200 million facility in 2007. Chandra Asri is Indonesia’s sole petrochemical naptha cracker
  • Mandated Lead Arranger and Bookrunner for one of Indonesia’s largest Leveraged Buy-Out (LBO) financing post the Asian Financial Crisis, when it successfully arranged the USD 600 million LBO Senior Debt acquisition financing for PT Adaro, one of Indonesia’s largest coal mines

India

  • Mandated Lead Arranger for India-based Reliance Utility and Power Limited and Reliance Ports and Terminals Limited in 2007
  • Mandated Lead Arranger and Bookrunner for the USD 2 billion project financing raised for Reliance Petroleum Limited, one of the largest refineries in the world. This was awarded PFI’s Petrochemical Deal of the Year 2006

China

  • Co-ordinating Arranger for the RMB 1.1 billion project financing for Vopak Shanghai in 2004, one of the first long-dated RMB project financing arranged by a foreign bank. This deal was voted by Euromoney’s Project Finance magazine as Asia Pacific Logistics Deal of the Year. A RMB 268 million project finance loan for the Phase 2 expansion of Vopak Shanghai was successfully completed in 2009 by DBS and the existing lenders

About DBS

DBS is the largest bank in Singapore, a leading bank in Hong Kong and is one of the largest financial services groups in Asia. Headquartered in Singapore, DBS has operations in 16 markets and is a well-capitalised bank with "AA-" and "Aa1" credit ratings, one of the highest in the Asia Pacific region.

As a bank that specialises in Asia, DBS leverages its insights, deep understanding of the region and appreciation of local cultures to serve and build lasting relationships with its clients. DBS provides a full range of services in corporate, SME, consumer and wholesale banking activities across Asia and the Middle East. DBS will leverage its growing presence in China, Hong Kong and Taiwan to intermediate the increasing trade and investment flows in the Greater China region. The bank is also focused on extending its footprint and facilitating capital flows in fast-growing Indonesia and India.

DBS acknowledges the passion, commitment and can-do spirit in each of its 14,000 staff, representing over 30 nationalities. For more information, please visit www.dbs.com.

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