RBC Capital Markets joins DirectBooks

Dan Barnes

DirectBooks, the capital markets consortium founded to improve the bond issuance process has seen RBC Capital Markets join its platform as a member.

At present the bond issuance process is highly manual and lacks standardisation. Buy-side trading desks have to aggregate information from multiple banks during the book building process for a bond issue, and intermediate between the portfolio manager and the sell side syndication desk using unstructured communications, although the range of possible information that could be released is well known.

Guidelines for which data should be included was set by the Credit Roundtable, a buy-side group focused on protecting bond investors, in 2021.

DirectBooks is attempting to address inefficiencies in the marketplace across multiple communication channels, simplifying the primary issuance process through the use of structured data and streamlined communications.

The DirectBooks platform first launched with deal announcement functionality for globally distributed US Dollar Investment Grade issuances, offering a common set of structured deal data and document access for institutional investors. The product set will continue to expand globally with Euro deals, as well as orders and allocations functionality. Onboarding of additional dealers and institutional investors will continue to be phased in throughout 2021.

“The power of our global network continues to grow as we welcome RBC Capital Markets to the platform, and as we further expand beyond our initial founding banks,” said DirectBooks CEO, Rich Kerschner.

“The creation of DirectBooks answered an urgent need for a truly integrated and digital solution to the primary issuance market,” said Dan Botoff, managing director, head of US Investment Grade Syndicate at RBC Capital Markets. “We’re committed to providing best-in-class solutions to our clients and DirectBooks was a clear answer for us.”