Trent Wilkins

The last two weeks have been exciting and intense. Following the Fed’s unexpected decision to not taper quantitative easing, the primary debt markets have been incredibly busy with Barclays at the fore-front of the activity.

Last week alone, Barclays acted on over 60% of all priced transactions, an achievement that led to us being awarded ‘Bank of the Week’ by Financial News.

Before the activity began I spent a few days in Lagos Nigeria, meeting with several of the firms Financial Institutional clients (Banks) based there. The banks are looking to adopt BASEL II regulation soon which will likely see them needing to raise capital in the international markets.

The main purpose of our trip was to outline how exactly they might look to raise this capital. It was my first trip to Nigeria and I did not know what to expect however I was very excited. I found Lagos to be an amazing place – its vibrant, buzzy and is growing fast. The trip was successful and I very much look forward to going back to continue these discussions.

As soon as I arrived back on the desk we launched a transaction for Coca Cola Icecek – the Turkish-based bottler that forms part of the Coca Cola group. The transaction, on which Barclays acted as Joint Lead Manager, attracted a lot of interest from investors and allowed the company to price a US$500m-sized transaction for them in less than 12 hours- the deal actually attracted orders of over US$4bn which meant investors actually wanted a lot more bonds than what the company was willing to offer – eight times as many!

The client was extremely happy with the transaction as it achieved both their size and pricing targets. It was an excellent result for Barclays given that this was the first transaction we have done with the client and their first ever transaction in the international debt capital markets.