Fidelity Bank affirms commitment to Ghana’s financial, capital markets dev’t

Over the years, Fidelity Bank says it has initiated strategic projects with key industry stakeholders to support the growth and development of the financial and capital markets in Ghana.

“We have teams that specialise in a number of strategically important sectors that support Ghana’s real economy”, the bank said in a statement, adding: “We recognise that achieving sustained economic growth requires strong partnerships with critically important market stakeholders if they are to realise lasting positive changes”. 

“One of our key markets of focus is the country’s financial and capital markets”, the bank said.

The commitment to supporting Ghana’s economic growth, the bank noted, led to the establishment in 2017 of a specialised unit to develop tailor-made solutions to assist the private and public sectors to take advantage of the nation’s vibrant financial and capital markets. 

“This successful setup has quickly become a sound model for the market, providing a suitable framework for other participants to build out new and important business lines to further support the growth of our markets”. 

Commenting on the banks contribution to Ghana’s financial and capital markets, Mr Sam Aidoo, the Deputy Managing Director, stated: “We are committed to partnering with both private and public institutions in creating more marketable offerings in a bid to attract sustainable international and increasingly important, local financing for development projects in the country”.

“The successful issuance of the recent US$3.025 billion Eurobond by the government of Ghana is proof of the enormous financing opportunities that are available to the government and businesses in the financial and capital markets space,” Mr Aidoo added.

He further intimated that this recent Eurobond issuance not only marked the first time a zero-coupon bond denominated in USD had been issued by an emerging market nation but more importantly that its success is largely attributed to the fact that more than half of the new money raised in this novel tranche came from the local Ghanaian investor base. 

He added that this result was due to the “strong collaboration between us and other local financial institutions”.

Over the years, Fidelity bank said it has “spearheaded a number of innovations and market developments in Ghana’s financial and capital markets that have resulted in substantial financial gains for the country”.

“Some of these development projects are in the energy and construction sectors, as well as international financial transactions like the aforementioned US$3.025 billion Eurobond issuance”.

On international transactions, “we were the first local bank to manage the logistics for a Eurobond issuance for Ghana”.

Prior to 2018, leading any aspect of a country’s access to global financial markets was deemed the preserve of only multinational banks in developed countries, but the bank said “following our success as the logistics bank for the 2018 Eurobond issuance, the status quo has changed and other local banks have had the opportunity to contribute to Ghana’s Eurobond issuances”.

It noted that for the past four consecutive years, “we have assisted the public sector by working with Joint Lead Managers and other local banks to ensure successful Eurobond issuances”.

On the local front, Fidelity Bank said: “we continue to add value to Ghana’s future economic growth potential”.

Touting its laurels in the financial and capital markets, the bank recalled that in July 2017, “we were appointed as Joint Lead Manager for the GHC 10 billion E.S.L.A. Plc Bond Programme under which cedi-denominated medium to long-term amortising bonds was issued. Over GHS 7 billion has been raised since the launch of the Programme and its success created the financing solution blueprint for other cedi-denominated bond issuances”.

In order to deepen local market participation, in 2018, “we were made Joint Bookrunner for the public sector’s medium to long-term bonds. This bold move resulted in an increase in local participation from 34.57% in December 2017 to 72.10% as of March 2021, largely driven by our efforts together with our partners”, the bank said.

Additionally, it said “to lead innovation in the local financial market, in December 2018, we executed the first-ever cross-currency total return swap of approximately USD 40 million with Société Générale and Frontclear”.

Hitherto, the bank said “cross-currency swap transactions were not pursued by industry players due to the myriad of challenges that confront parties when executing cross-border transactions”.

“The successful execution of this transaction clearly showcased to the international community and to local players that with the right structuring, cross-currency transactions can be executed in frontier markets like Ghana”, Fidelity Bank observed.

Future Outlook

The bank said, according to its Divisional Director of Financial and Capital Markets, Prince Thomas Essilfie, “we are looking to broaden our product offerings in domestic financial and capital markets by partnering with the public and private sector, retail and institutional investors, and domestic banks to foster overall economic development.”

He further noted that “we believe that our financing solutions and product offerings will deepen the knowledge of the domestic banking space and further contribute to the capacity development of the domestic financial and capital markets.”

Source: ClassFMonline.com

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