RIZAL COMMERCIAL Banking Corp. (RCBC) closed its offering of two-year fixed-rate bonds ahead of schedule as orders reached more than double its P3-billion program.

RCBC said in a disclosure on Wednesday that it has closed its bond offer, which started last Monday and was initially set to run until March 27.

“RCBC’s fourth foray into the peso bond market was met with strong demand from investors, allowing the bank to raise more than its target size of P3 billion,” the bank said.

RCBC did not give an exact figure for the funds raised from the offer. It said proceeds from the offering will be used to support its asset growth and other general purposes as well as refinance its maturing liabilities.

“The bank decided to shorten the public offer period in order to provide sufficient time for the submission of the documentary requirements in light of the logistical challenges given the enhanced community quarantine brought about by COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019). This is in line with RCBC’s commitment to restore normalization in the capital markets and support business activity despite current execution challenges,” it added.

The bonds will be issued at a coupon of 4.848% per annum and are set to be listed on the Philippine Dealing and Exchange Corp. on April 17.

They were offered in denominations of P100,000 and increments of P10,000 thereafter.

The bonds comprise the fourth tranche of RCBC’s P100-billion bond and commercial program

The sole lead arranger and bookrunner for the bond issuance was the Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corp. (HSBC) while RCBC Capital Corp. served as the financial advisor. Together, HSBC and RCBC were selling agents for the bonds.

In 2019, RCBC’s net income climbed by 25% to P5.4 billion on the back of the strong performance of its core business, high margins, strong trading gains, and higher fee-based income.

Its revenues also grew by 35% to P35.9 billion, buoyed by growth in interest income from loans and receivables.

RCBC’s shares closed at P16.90 apiece on Wednesday, up by 40 centavos or 2.42% from the previous day’s finish. — L.W.T. Noble