Aabar buys $63m UniCredit securities
Abu Dhabi, March 2, 2009
Abu Dhabi's Aabar Investments has bought 49.8 million euros ($63.12 million) of convertible bonds in Italy's UniCredit.
The securities, exchangeable into ordinary shares of Italy's second-biggest bank by market value, will pay a quarterly coupon equal to the 3-month Euro Interbank Offered Rate plus 4.5 percent per year, the investment firm said in a statement.
Aabar is based in the United Arab Emirates, the world's fifth-largest oil exporter, which last month launched a $500 million takeover bid for Canada's Nova Chemicals.
The convertible bond issue, called Cashes, is part of efforts by UniCredit to boost its capital by 6.6 billion euros.
Aabar said the securities carried an initial exchange price of 3.083 euros.
UniCredit, the biggest lender in central and eastern Europe, has been the Italian bank hardest hit by the credit crisis.
Italy approved a scheme last month to bolster banks' capital through bonds in a crisis-fighting measure expected to reach up to 12 billion euros.
Under the plan, banks would issue bonds that the government would buy and use the proceeds to shore up their capital. - Reuters