Freehills has announced it is advising Citigroup, CommSec, Evans & Partners and RBS as the joint lead managers (JLMs) to the Commonwealth Bank of Australia's $500 million inaugural retail bond issue announced yesterday (18 November).
The Freehills team advising the JLMs is led by partners Philippa Stone and Patrick Lowden who are supported by senior associate Grant Williams and lawyer Jeremy Chew.
Stone said of the deal: "The transaction represents an interesting development in the diversification of banks' funding sources. It also demonstrates the flexibility of Australia's fundraising regime to support local banks, which enjoy certain prospectus and debenture trust deed exemptions reflecting their prudentially regulated status."
Lowden added: "Australian banks have been frequent issuers of retail notes, but traditionally the interest has been in the hybrid space, including as part of stapled Tier 1 products. A large issue of senior notes breaks the mould a bit, and will hopefully give added impetus to the development of a more traditional retail debt market."