December 12th 2014

Alpha Bank Raises USD 500 mil in shipping loans securitization

Alpha Bank recently completed a shipping loan securitization transaction with Citi which involves 5 years term non-recourse funding in excess of USD 500 mil.

The Alpha – Citi transaction was structured as a private – unrated transaction. It is the first Greek loan securitization transaction since 2008. Piraeus Bank is also said to be contemplating a similar transaction for performing and non-performing loan portfolios.

Following the recent financial crisis and recession in Greece, all four systemic Greek banks as well as Attica Bank are currently evaluating alternative structures for better management of NPL portfolios.

During the 1st half of 2014, total Greek NPL backlog stood at roughly € 80 billion of which approx. € 45 billion are corporate/business NPLs according to estimates of the Bank of Greece. Against those NPLs, Greek banks have taken approx. € 38 billion of provisions, however given that a sizeable part of those loans is covered by real estate, total coverage ratios appear quite high. Some analysts however argue that collateral values are often supported by unrealistic/ not-updated real estate valuations.