Citi wins Taiwan's first credit card ABS

AnShin Card mandate is bank''s third in Taiwan.

Citigroup has won another securitization mandate in Taiwan, this time for Bank SinoPac's credit card business, AnShin Card. The deal is expected to be for as much as NT$4 billion ($137 million) and will be the island's first credit card deal.

Securitization got a slow start in Taiwan but the technique is now being used to sell a much wider variety of assets than in any other market in the region at the moment. Residential mortgages have been the most common and are expected to remain so, with Chinatrust Commercial, Taishin International and First Commercial all having sold mortgage deals recently.

But originators have experimented with other assets too. The first deal securitized a pool of loans made by Industrial Bank of Taiwan. Cosmos sold bonds backed by receiveables from its George & Mary cash cards. Fubon Construction launched a real estate investment trust (Reit). And now SinoPac, known for its innovation, is bringing a credit card deal to the market.

Although the Fubon Reit was handled in-house by Fubon Securities the foreign banks have been involved in all of the other deals. Indeed, Citi has already completed a mortgage deal for Taishin International in Taiwan and is also working on Chang Hwa's first deal.

With erratic issuance in other markets around the region it is inevitable that the leading asset-backed arrangers are all now focusing on Taiwan, with the priority on building market share rather than profits - and Citi's three mandates suggest it is winning on that front.

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