DP World hires banks for $1bn bond to finance Topaz acquisition

Muscat - 

DP World Plc mandated banks to raise about US$1bn of bonds to finance the acquisition of Topaz Energy & Marine, according to three people with knowledge of the plans.

DP World last week said it would buy Topaz from Oman’s Renaissance Services and Standard Chartered Plc’s private equity unit for nearly US$1.1bn, marking its first venture into the oil and gas sector. The acquisition is likely to close this year.

The world’s largest port operator hired Citigroup Inc, Dubai Islamic Bank and Standard Chartered to arrange investor meetings in Hong Kong, Singapore and London from July 10, according to a document sent to investors and seen by Bloomberg.

The Dubai-based firm plans to sell benchmark ten-year Islamic bonds and is also considering long-dated conventional bonds, the document shows. Barclays, Deutsche Bank, Emirates NBD Capital, First Abu Dhabi Bank and HSBC Holdings have also been hired as joint lead managers and bookrunners.

A spokesman at DP World declined to comment.

The ports company has been on a shopping spree over the past 18 months, buying P&O Ferries and P&O Ferrymasters in Europe and Puertos y Logistica in Chile. It also purchased an additional stake in DP World Australia and invested through its joint ventures in Canada and India.

DP World is rated Baa1, the third-lowest investment grade, by Moody’s Investors Service and BBB+ by Fitch Ratings Inc.

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