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PRESS RELEASE January 17, 2018

World Bank Marks Return to Sterling Market with Its Largest Pound-Denominated Bond

Washington, DC – The World Bank (IBRD, Aaa/AAA) launched its largest bond denominated in pound sterling, raising GBP 1.25 billion from institutional investors around the world. The five-year global bond is also the largest new issuance in the sterling market by a sovereign, supranational and agency (SSA) issuer since 2012.

The transaction attracted an extremely high-quality order book. There were more than 40 investors diversified across geography and type, with orders exceeding GBP1.5 billion. The greatest demand came from UK-based investors. Central banks and official institutions also showed strong demand, with nearly 40% of orders. 

The bond offers an annual coupon of 1.00% and a semi-annual yield of 1.100%. It was priced at 27 basis points over the 1.75% UK Gilt due September 2022.

Arunma Oteh, World Bank Vice President and Treasurer, said: “We are delighted to return to the market with the World Bank’s largest ever sterling bond. The strong response from domestic and international investors speaks to the opportunities they see in the sterling market. The exceptional quality of the order book reinforces the World Bank’s standing as a premier issuer. We greatly value the steadfast loyalty of investors to the World Bank and their support for our development mandate.” 

The joint-lead managers for the bond are Barclays, HSBC and NatWest Markets.

Investor Distribution

By Geography

By Investor Type

United Kingdom


Banks/Bank Treasuries/Corporates




Central Banks/Official Institutions


Europe and Middle East


Asset Managers/Pension/Insurance






Transaction Summary


World Bank (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, IBRD)

Issuer Rating

Aaa / AAA




GBP 1.25 billion

Settlement Date

January 24, 2018

Issue Price



1.000% p.a.

Coupon Payment Date

December 19th in each year, from and including December 19, 2018 to and including the Maturity Date

Maturity Date

December 19, 2022

Issue Yield

1.100% s.a.


Luxembourg Stock Exchange

Clearing Systems

Euroclear / Clearstream Luxembourg

Lead Managers

Barclays, HSBC, NatWest Markets



Joint Lead Manager Quotes

“World Bank has again demonstrated its unrivalled credit quality and broad investor following across currencies in high grade fixed income markets, pricing the largest new line Sterling SSA benchmark (excluding the UK DMO) since 2012. This was a fantastic transaction that generated an extremely high quality order book. Barclays is honoured to have been involved as a bookrunner,” said Alex Paterson, Director SSA Origination at Barclays.

"This is a truly outstanding result for the World Bank, printing their largest Sterling bond to date. The tight pricing and healthy oversubscription is testament to the positive tone in the Sterling SSA market and confidence in the World Bank credit. The broad, diversified distribution makes this deal stand out, and is yet another demonstration of World Bank's appeal to a wide variety of investors,” said Asif Sherani, Co-Head of SSA & FIG Syndicate at HSBC.

"World Bank’s leading funding team were able to monitor and capitalise on optimal market conditions for their first GBP benchmark of the year. This deal not only represents World Bank’s largest sterling print ever, but it also represents the largest Non-European SSA Sterling print in history and is testament to World Bank’s unparalleled access to global investors. A simply spectacular result," said Damien Carde, Head of Frequent Borrower Group at NatWest Markets.

About the World Bank

The World Bank (International Bank for Reconstruction and Development, IBRD), rated Aaa/AAA (Moody’s/S&P), is an international organization created in 1944 and the original member of the World Bank Group. It operates as a global development cooperative owned by 189 nations. It provides its members with financing, expertise and coordination services so they can achieve equitable and sustainable economic growth in their national economies and find effective solutions to pressing regional and global economic and environmental problems. The World Bank has two main goals: to end extreme poverty and promote shared prosperity. It seeks to achieve them primarily by providing loans, risk management products, and expertise on development-related disciplines to its borrowing member government clients in middle-income countries and other creditworthy countries, and by coordinating responses to regional and global challenges. It has been issuing sustainable development bonds in the international capital markets for over 70 years to fund its activities that achieve a positive impact. Information on World Bank bonds for investors is available on the World Bank Treasury website: www.worldbank.org/debtsecurities.