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At the start of 2009, the continuing financial and economic crisis determined the refinancing options in the money and capital markets. The trend of restrictive credit policies implemented by the banks, continuing tight liquidity and very high refinancing costs dominated the first four months of the year. However, Volkswagen was able during this time to maintain its strong position as an issuer and further consolidate its financial base by taking advantage of existing opportunities. In this context, the Volkswagen Group not only used market opportunities in the European bond market, but also tapped into new investor groups and reopened some markets through its transactions. In January 2009, for example, we issued our first bond denominated in Swiss francs (CHF) with a volume of CHF 300 million for our Canadian financial services business and, in the fall, under our Volkswagen car lease program, we issued the first public corporate asset-backed securities (ABS) bond in Europe in a placement of around €520 million.

To secure our financial flexibility in the Automotive Division, we raised a total of €9.3 billion in the capital market by issuing six bonds, with maturities of between 18 months and seven years. These transactions, which were also structured for the retail market, aroused the interest of many investors and were regularly many times oversubscribed. The excellent market acceptance of these debt securities was subsequently also reflected in the very positive performance of the different bonds in secondary trading.

In addition, at the beginning of the year, we placed a European benchmark bond of €1.5 billion for the Financial Services Division in a difficult capital market environment. In the USA, Volkswagen issued the first ABS transaction based on lease receivables for USD 1.75 billion under the government’s Term Asset-Backed Securities Loan Facility (TALF) program in May 2009.

Independently of the above public transactions, the Volkswagen Group also took advantage of additional investor interest by engaging in a large number of private placements in the money and capital market. The following overview provides information about the utilization of our money and capital market programs as of December 31, 2009:

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Programs

 

Authorized volume
€ billion

 

Amount utilized
on Dec. 31, 2009
€ billion

Commercial Paper

 

17.7

 

4.4

Medium Term Notes

 

53.9

 

27.9

Other capital market programs

 

8.0

 

0.0

Asset Backed Securities

 

38.8

 

14.8

In the credit market, Volkswagen successfully maintained its comprehensive facilities provided by confirmed credit lines, in spite of increasing restrictions imposed by the banks. In this regard, the Group’s as yet unused syndicated facility of €7.8 billion will continue to be available as before until June 2012.

The cash holdings, short- and long-term credit lines, and the available money and capital market programs continue to give the Volkswagen Group a very high degree of financial flexibility, thereby enabling it to cover its refinancing requirements and ensuring that it remains solvent at all times.

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