Cuatrecasas has advised BTG Pactual Colombia on the structuring and placement of a bond issue on the Colombian secondary market for Palermo Sociedad Portuaria, to finance port infrastructures and refinance the company’s existing debt. BTG Pactual Colombia acted as structuring agent, coordinator and placement agent, and Banco BTG Pactual (Cayman Branch) acquired all the notes issued.
Taking into account the concentration of bank loans and the cost increase of traditional bank financing, it is essential that capital markets open up to financing this type of project. That is precisely why this is an innovative transaction on the local market, as it is the second local project bond negotiated and issued in Colombia under a project finance structure.
With this placement of the first tranche of ordinary bonds on the secondary market, through the Colombian Stock Exchange, Palermo Sociedad Portuaria secured financing for $33 million to implement Puerto Palermo’s expansion plan (including the construction of port infrastructures and storage facilities) and also for the payment of existing debt.
The project has a great social impact on the township of Palermo, in the municipality of Sitionuevo (Magdalena), as the construction works and growth in operations increase job opportunities for the local community. Moreover, Palermo Sociedad Portuaria will be able to continue contributing to the Buenamar Foundation—the Coremar Group’s social organization—which is promoting a long-term plan for social change in the region with education at the forefront.
The Buenamar Foundation recently signed an agreement with the Colombian National Training Service (SENA), and inaugurated the first SENA headquarters in the municipality in May of this year. In addition, there have been other activities, including (i) the recent building and equipping of a waste collection center for the township of Palermo’s waste management, (ii) the development of a strategy for social change through the township’s housing with the Pintuco Foundation, and (iii) the football and folk dance and music associations, which show the importance of the port infrastructure for the country’s development and growth.
The firm Bermúdez Ulloa was involved with the financing, as legal counsel to Banicol as structuring agent and coordinator, and to Palermo Sociedad Portuaria as the issuer.