Agribusiness Giant Cargill Sets Up $600M Collateralized Debt Fund
Ben-Amos, Omri, American Banker
A financial subsidiary of agribusiness giant Cargill Inc. has established a new collateralized debt obligation issued by Wayland Investment Fund.
The $600 million fund will include a portfolio of public and private high-yield obligations and bank loans and may also invest in distressed debt, public and private equities, and other so-called "special situations."
It is among the last of about $5 billion of such obligations to close in the fourth quarter, bringing 1997's collateralized debt market to a new high of about $50 billion in volume, up from $12 billion in 1996, according to Moody's Investors Service.
Collateralized bond and loan funds like Wayland, and other institutional investors such as insurance companies and mutual funds, rose to prominence in some segments of the bank loan market in 1997 and now account for 37% of the highly leveraged loan market, according to Portfolio Management Data.
The fund's manager, CFSC Wayland Advisers Inc., will use the services of Minneapolis-based Cargill Financial Services Corp. to run the portfolio.
Privately held Cargill is an international marketer, processor, and distributor of agricultural, food, financial, and industrial products with 79,000 employees in 72 countries and business activities in 100 more. A company spokeswoman declined to comment on the new fund.
Observers noted Cargill's experience in investing in several asset classes though CFSC, especially its Value Investment Group, which is best known for investing in distressed assets. …