BBVA has acted as bookrunner and mandated lead arranger for a EUR 60 million loan granted to Astaldi. Crédit Agricole was also involved as joint bookrunner for the transaction, while the Italian Export Credit Agency (SACE) served as guarantor.

The five-year loan agreement between BBVA, Crédit Agricole, Astaldi and SACE was signed on 31 July 2011 and BBVA and the French bank will each contribute EUR 30 million. SACE, which is entirely controlled by the Italian Finance Ministry, is serving as guarantor for Astaldi. The Italian construction company, which is present in 24 countries, will use the credit line for its international investment projects, particularly in Turkey. Astaldi is the leading player in the Italian construction and infrastructure sector and conducts almost 60% of its business in international markets, chiefly in Algeria, Bulgaria, Chile, Poland, Romania, Turkey and Venezuela.

This is the first structured financing transaction in which BBVA has been involved under SACE's internationalisation programme. Furthermore, the structuring of the loan satisfies the requirements of the Bank of Italy.

BBVA and Astaldi have forged a fruitful relationship and at the end of September BBVA announced its involvement in the structured finance for four hospitals in Tuscany to be built by a consortium in which Astaldi holds a 35% stake.