Landmark has announced new funding arrangements to extend its suite of lending products and continue the growth in its loan book, AWB Group Managing Director Andrew Lindberg said today.
As part of the new arrangements, Rabobank’s $1.58 billion ‘Landmark managed’ loan book has been purchased for inclusion into an innovative funding vehicle specifically established for Landmark’s lending business.
Settlement of the purchase is scheduled for 30 November 2005, coinciding with the formal conclusion of an alliance with Rabobank. This follows from AWB’s announcement in May this year that it was seeking new, more flexible funding arrangements.
Mr Lindberg said the new funding vehicle, known as Rural Trust, would provide the platform from which Landmark could continue to grow its loan book.
“Under Landmark’s management, the Rabobank funded loan book has grown to $1.58 billion over the past several years,” Mr Lindberg said.
“This strong growth can be attributed to Landmark’s knowledge and understanding of Australian agriculture, which has allowed it to better service the finance needs of rural customers.”
Mr Lindberg said the loan book and associated assets used to manage the client loan portfolio have been purchased from Rabobank for $25 million.
“Landmark is now strengthening its position in the agri-finance market by developing its own funding vehicle, ‘Rural Trust’,” Mr Lindberg said.
Warehouse funding facilities of $2 billion for the Rural Trust were arranged and underwritten by ANZ Investment Bank and will be funded by ANZ and Rabobank Group.
“The Rural Trust will provide a flexible funding platform that will enable funding to be raised in the Australian and International banking and capital markets, much like the AWB ‘Ring-Fencing’ business model. This ‘Ring-Fencing’ structure allowed AWB Harvest Finance to obtain the highest possible short term credit rating available.
“The creation of the Rural Trust will also enable Landmark to continue to grow its loan book by extending the available suite of lending products to include an enhanced Line of Credit, and a new Equity Advantage product. These complement the existing product range which includes Overdraft, Term Loans and access to Equipment Finance. These new products will be available following establishment of the new funding arrangements,” Mr Lindberg said.
“This is yet another example of AWB bringing increased competition to the Australian agri-finance market through continuous innovation,” Mr Lindberg said.