April 16, 2013 / 10:16 AM / 5 years ago

UPDATE 1-Trader Gunvor aims to raise $300 mln via 5-7-year bond

* CFO says will continue investing in physical assets

* Follows similar moves by Trafigura, Louis Dreyfus

* Sector faces greater transparency requirements (Recasts, adds comment in third paragraph, context throughout)

By Emma Farge and Christopher Johnson

LAUSANNE, Switzerland, April 16 (Reuters) - Privately-owned commodities trader Gunvor said on Tuesday it hoped to raise $300 million through the sale of a 5-7-year bond, as the company seeks to expand its energy assets.

“We are going to go for our first bond - unrated as well - to hopefully raise $300 million (over) three to five years,” Chief Financial Officer Jerome Schurink told a Financial Times commodities conference in Switzerland.

He declined to give many details, other than to say: “The banks already know. We are not reinventing the wheel.”

Several private commodity traders have recently raised money from the bond markets, including Trafigura and Louis Dreyfus, to help pay for acquisitions.

Gunvor has diversified into new markets beyond oil in recent years and has been snapping up assets as it seeks to increase its control over supply chains.

Last year it bought two European refineries from insolvent oil refiner Petroplus and its Chief Executive Torbjorn Tornqvist said it was looking at new oil and gas opportunities in the United States.

“There has been a tremendous change in profitability in the past few years from being 95 percent of trading income. Last year, over 45 percent came from assets,” Schurink told the conference.

“This has transformed the company completely and will continue in the next couple of years... We are being completely bombarded with people wanting to sell to us,” he added.

The decision of privately-owned commodity traders to tap the bond markets is resulting in greater transparency requirements for a sector known for discretion.

Louis Dreyfus, which carried out its first successful bond issue worth $350 million in September, published its first ever results in November. (Reporting by Emma Farge and Christopher Johnson; Editing by James Jukwey and Tom Pfeiffer)

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