The calendar year of 2016 experienced a drop of 14 percent in syndicated loan market volume to US$68.5b compared to 2015. Q4 2016 fared better, with a 32 percent increase in volumes to US$29.3b, representing a $7b increase compared to the corresponding period last year. An increase in M&A activity and higher capital expenditure have driven the increase in volume in the market.
Notable transactions include the leveraged buyout of Genesis Care, Australia’s biggest cancer and cardiac services provider (by Macquarie and China Resource), for A$790m, which closed in November 2016 with 17 lenders joining the syndicate term facility. Woolworths also refinanced with over 30 banks committing to the A$700m deal (upsized from A$500m).
Pricing remained consistent with their prior A$2b issuance which closed in April 2016. The continued investment into renewable energy has seen a number of new transactions come to market, including Sapphire borrowing A$332m to develop a 270MW wind farm.