Raising the bar for debt advisory

Raising the bar for debt advisory

To reflect the changing requirements of our clients, we have redefined our debt advisory service offering and established a dedicated team of consultants to secure the benefits of the currently strong financing conditions for our clients in the long run.

Cutting through the noise

As debt capital markets become increasingly sophisticated, the needs of our clients are also evolving: with more financing options than ever before, our clients are better able to find the financing that suits their needs and to diversify their funding risks. But understanding the options, and knowing which to choose, remains a challenge. An increasing number of our clients want us to provide another layer to our strategic corporate financing consulting. They need advice when choosing their financing options, and a trusted consultant to guide them through often complicated processes.

“We realized that if we really wanted to help our clients to cut through the noise, we would need to create a team entirely focused on debt advisory”, explains Zanders partner Sander van Tol. “Meeting the increasing sophistication of lenders requires a lot of transaction experience, which calls for focus and a hands-on approach to the entire process – from financing strategy all the way to closing”, says Zanders consultant Willem Six, a recent addition to the debt advisory team. Both agree that Zander’s rapid growth in this direction and the enthusiasm of the consultants who joined the team enhance the service.

Raising the bar

So what can we expect? Six says: “Getting a ‘fair deal’ takes a lot of time and attention to detail. We take the routine of the financing process out of our clients’ hands, freeing attention to focus on the things that matter. Following all the developments in the debt markets is also time consuming. A lot happens behind the scenes and only becomes visible when a transaction is executed. We can provide the latest debt markets insights derived from transactions, reducing uncertainty and simplifying strategic decision-making.”

So what will be done differently? Six explains: “With state-of-the-art pricing and rating tools and a deep understanding of how banks work, we extend our consulting beyond the obvious market-driven approach. Getting attention from the right people can also make a big difference. We have invested heavily to ensure that our clients get direct access to the people who matter. Be it within banks, direct lenders, law firms or due diligence providers. This ensures that things get done.”

Financing conditions

And what is the short-term outlook? According to Six, financing conditions remain excellent and appear to be recovering from the recent turmoil in the equity markets. He adds that the macro outlook is strong, debt funding is plentiful, swap rates remain low and lenders are willing to provide companies with a lot of leeway in the contracts. “Many companies will qualify under the new ECB guidelines. We don’t see this affecting their ability to raise financing yet, but do expect longer refinancing processes and a closer scrutiny by the banks. In the long term, the positive conditions won’t prevail forever. Our focus for the next six months will be for our clients to secure these benefits in the longer term,” says Six.