On September 24, 1992, Bladex became the first Latin American bank to make an initial public offering of shares at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). It was a successful issuance with an oversubscription of four million shares, far above the original target of three million shares as investors showed strong interest. This important milestone was the solution to strength and diversify the Bank's capital base in order to continue the expansion of its business and to make Bladex a leading financial institution for its clients in Latin America.
The listing of shares in the NYSE allowed Bladex to build on and enhance its Corporate Governance standards and to develop a more efficient and competitive organization based on global standards and benchmarks, with a clear focus on striving to attain sustainable performance not only in terms of profitability metrics, but also in supporting the internationalization of Latin American businesses, and consequently, the expansion of its foreign trade activities.
Another important milestone during 1992 was Bladex joining the select group of investment grade rated institutions, making Bladex the first Latin American bank to achieve this distinction. This allowed the bank to increase and diversify its funding base and to achieve more competitive pricing for the funding.
In the course of these 25 years Bladex has consolidated its strategy of supporting foreign trade and regional integration in Latin America, offering financial solutions of excellence to an ever more diversified customer base in over 20 countries in the region, firmly committed to world class corporate governance standards, and to very attractive levels of total shareholder return.
Looking forward to the next 25 years, I see a modern, nimble and efficient organization with a team of talented professionals propelled by our values, and fully prepared to keep our tradition of innovation in an ever increasing digital environment amid new technologies, while maintaing the clear objective of achieving sustainable growth in results and completing Bladex's transformation into being the bank of reference for commercial activities associated with the internationalization of Latin America and the growth of its foreign trade.