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A1: An unlikely syndication

19 December 2008

Read more: [A1 Mobil] [project finance] [A-Model]

Syndication of the 29-year Eu595 million ($796 million) debt and equity facilities backing the Eu650 million 30-year A1 Hamburg-Bremen toll road concession closed at the end of November. Five banks, including Deka Bank and Commerzbank, joined the mandated lead arrangers (MLAs) Unicredit/HVB, Caja Madrid and DZ Bank in the lender line-up.

The project is Germany's largest PPP to date and the largest A-Model ever awarded. But more significantly, the deal is a rare commodity in the project finance market at the moment – an underwritten deal with market risk. The A1 financing leaves lenders with traffic risk at a time when most banks will only look at availability-payment based deals, have little liquidity and no appetite for long-term risk. The 29-year tenor on the deal leaves just a one-year tail.

Sponsored by A1 Mobil Consortium – comprising Bilfinger Berger (42.5%), John Laing (42.5%) and Johann Bunte (15%) – the project...

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