In a number of market deals both share and bond issues the branch found itself working alongside NHM in the syndicates which underwrote company equity subscriptions and bond placements.
Even though few deals took place directly between the branch and NHM, their relationship was close and the branch was invited to take part in a large number of bond issues and share placements for which NHM was lead-arranger. The branch s participation was often at a modest level but it enjoyed a consistent presence on the syndicates.73
However, a more sizeable deal came up in 1937, when the Paris head office of the Banque de Paris et des Pays-Bas Paris set up a 5 million franc line of credit by documentary acceptance74 in favour of NHM.
French loans raised in the Netherlands
During the period, several French bonds were issued in the Netherlands, especially by railway companies. In 1926, the branch was on the syndicate which underwrote the placement of a 30 million guilder bond on behalf of French railway companies, participating to the tune of 2 million guilders. That same year, the Alsace Lorraine Railway Company raised 75 million guilders. The loan was placed in the Netherlands (50 million) and in Switzerland (25 million) and the Amsterdam and Geneva branches both took part in the operation. The following year, the Paris-Orléans Railway Company issued a 20 million guilder bond in Amsterdam, a deal in which the branch participated for an amount of 1,625,000 guilders. This company issued a further bond in 1928, for 11 million guilders, 7 million of which were offered on the market and the remaining 4 million held by a group of banks led by NHM and the Amsterdam branch of the Banque de Paris et des Pays-Bas.
Early in 1927, the city of Paris issued a bond to raise 28 million guilders, the branch underwriting an amount of 1,350,000 guilders. This loan underwent conversion in 1932 into a new 30 million guilder bond which was placed in the Netherlands and Switzerland. The Amsterdam and Geneva branches took part in the operation.
In 1937 and 1938, the French Treasury issued two Treasury notes, each raising 100 million guilders. The Bank underwrote 5 million on the first issue, divided between headquarters and the Amsterdam branch. In 1939 a conversion loan in the amount of 175 million guilders was issued by the French state for the purpose of converting part of the existing loans taken out by the railway companies. Paper worth 100 million guilders was issued in the Netherlands and 75 million in Switzerland. The Brussels, Amsterdam and Geneva branches each participated for an amount of 5 million.
73. During the period 1880-1964, Paribas participated in 147 financial deals initiated by NHM (Source: Ton de Graaf, Voor handel en maatschappij, Geschiedenis van de Nederlandsche Handel-Maatschappij, 1824-1964. Published by Boom, Amsterdam, 2012.
74. An acceptance credit is one where the issuing or confirming bank, on presentation of the required documents, accepts by signing a draft drawn on the bank and thus commits to paying at maturity.
LOAN FROM FRENCH RAILWAY COMPANIES,
WITH FRENCH STATE GUARANTEE, ISSUED IN AMSTERDAM IN 1926
82 T H E H I S T O R Y O F B N P PA R I B A S I N T H E N E T H E R L A N D S