Housing Billion

February, 21 (LBO) – HDFC Bank, Sri Lanka’s largest mortgage lender, is to raise one billion rupees in 10-year funds through a mortgage securitization issue to fund their growing housing loan book, an official said. At the end of September 2006, the bank had 8.5 billion rupees of performing advances and assets of 10.2 billion rupees.

HDFC shares closed up 1.75 at 180 rupees Wednesday. The issue would be structured by Citibank is expected to be completed in three months, Chief Executive C A Sarathchandra told LBO.

HDFC Bank issued the country’s first rated mortgage backed security in 2005.

Fitch Ratings Lanka rated the securities AA- (lka) above HDFC’s entity rating of A (lka).

The 506.4 million rupee issue, over-collateralized with more than 200 million rupees of extra housing loans was taken up by the Bank of Ceylon, Employees Provident Fund and NSB.

The bank is also raising 500 million rupees of 4-year money through a separate debenture issue, next month.

HDFC has issued 13,000 housing loans for new houses and upgrades in 2006, up from about 11,000 in 2005, Sarathchandra said.

HDFC is hoping to branching out into lifestyle loans, giving their customers a chance to spruce up t