Annual Report 2019

53 Financial Risk Management

In the course of its business activities, Vonovia is exposed to various financial risks. The Group-wide financial risk management system aims to identify any potentially negative impact on the financial position of the Group early on and take suitable measures to limit this impact. For the structure and organization of financial risk management, we refer to the management report (see chapter Structure and Instruments of the Risk Management System). This system was implemented on the basis of Group guidelines, which were approved by the Management Board and which are continually reviewed. The risks associated with financial instruments and the corresponding risk management are described in detail as follows:

Market Risks

Currency Risks

The cash-effective currency risks arising in connection with the still existing USD bond were eliminated by the simultaneous contracting of cross currency swaps. Fixed and expected purchase price payments in connection with the acquisition of Victoria Park and Hembla were secured through the conclusion of foreign currency forwards. In addition, currency fluctuations are expected to result from financing relationships with Swedish subsidiaries. All in all, loans denominated in euros totaling € 1,268.1 million (Dec. 31, 2018: none) and loans denominated in Swedish krona totaling SEK 5,657.7 million (Dec. 31, 2018: none) were granted to Swedish subsidiaries. Based on the interest rate structure as of December 31, 2019, a -50 basis point change in the value of the Swedish krona against the euro would result in currency gains of € 90.9 million, whereas a change of +50 basis points would result in a currency loss of € 82.6 million. Vonovia is subject to no further material currency risks in the scope of its usual business activities.

Interest Rate Risks

In the course of its business activities, Vonovia is exposed to cash-effective interest rate risks as a result of floating-rate debt as well as new and follow-on loans. Within this context, the interest markets are continually monitored by the Finance and Treasury department. Its observations are incorporated into the financing strategy.

As part of its financing strategy, Vonovia uses derivative financial instruments, in particular interest rate swaps and caps, to limit or manage interest rate risks. Vonovia’s policies permit the use of derivatives only if they are associated with underlying assets or liabilities, contractual rights or obligations and planned, highly probable transactions.

A sensitivity analysis for cash flow hedges is provided under chapter [G55] Cash Flow Hedges and Stand-Alone Interest Rate Swaps.

Credit Risks

Vonovia is exposed to a default risk resulting from the potential failure of a counterparty to fulfill its part of the contract. In order to minimize risks, financial transactions are only executed with banks and partners whose credit rating has been found by a rating agency to be at least equivalent to Vonovia’s. These counterparties are assigned volume limits set by the Management Board. The counterparty risks are managed and monitored centrally by the Finance and Treasury department.

Liquidity Risks

The companies of Vonovia are financed by borrowings to a notable degree. Due to their high volume, the loans are in some cases exposed to a considerable refinancing risk. The liquidity risks arising from financing transactions with high volumes (volume risks) have become apparent in the financial sector, especially in the wake of the financial crisis. In order to limit these risks, Vonovia is in constant contact with many different market players, continuously monitors all financing options available on the capital and banking markets and uses these options in a targeted manner. Moreover, Vonovia subjects its existing financings to an early review prior to the respective final maturity date in order to ensure refinancing.

Under the conditions of existing loan agreements, Vonovia is obliged to fulfill certain financial covenants such as the debt service coverage ratio or debt-equity ratio. If financial covenants are violated, the breach is not rectified within so-called cure periods and no mutually acceptable agreement can be reached with the lenders, the financing may be restructured and the cost structure changed. Should all commonly practiced solutions be unsuccessful, the lenders could call in the loan. The fulfillment of these financial covenants is continually monitored by Finance and Treasury on the basis of current actual figures and budgetary accounting.

In order to ensure its ability to pay at all times, Vonovia has put a system-supported cash management system in place. This system monitors and optimizes Vonovia’s cash flows on an ongoing basis and provides the Management Board with regular reports on the Group’s current liquidity situation. Liquidity management is supplemented by short-term rolling, monthly liquidity planning for the current fiscal year, of which the Management Board is also promptly notified.

The following table shows the forecast for undiscounted cash flows of the non-derivative financial liabilities and derivative financial instruments for the 2019 reporting year. The loan repayments shown for the following years contain only contractually fixed minimum repayment amounts:

 

 

2020

2021

2022 to 2026

in € million

Carrying amount as of Dec. 31, 2019

Interest

Repayment

Interest

Repayment

Interest

Repayment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Non-derivative financial liabilities

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liabilities to banks

7,403.0

101.1

892.6

97.1

951.6

301.2

3,542.8

Liabilities to other creditors

16,071.7

147.8

1,385.4

222.8

520.9

755.2

9,319.7

Deferred interest from other non-derivative financial liabilities

100.2

Liabilities from finance leases

470.9

13.2

22.8

16.5

15.2

60.4

47.5

Financial liabilities from tenant financing

162.2

117.8

2.0

10.0

Derivative financial liabilities

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Purchase price liabilities from put options/rights to reimbursement

39.0

3.3

34.0

1.7

Cash flow hedges/stand-alone interest rate derivatives

70.8

37.8

36.1

78.3

Cash flow hedges (cross currency swap) USD in €

-29.1

-11.1

-11.1

-22.3

-185.0

Cash flow hedges (cross currency swap) in €

 

8.5

8.5

16.8

185.0

Deferred interest from swaps

1.4

1.4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2019

2020

2021 to 2025

in € million

Carrying amount as of Dec. 31, 2018

Interest

Repayment

Interest

Repayment

Interest

Repayment

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Non-derivative financial liabilities

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Liabilities to banks

5.200.1

94.2

325.0

88.7

1.026.3

263.8

2,960.5

Liabilities to other creditors

14,816.0

134.6

2,255.0

195.2

1,842.4

616.8

6,972.4

Deferred interest from other non-derivative financial liabilities

119.9

119.9

Liabilities from finance leases

99.4

5.8

9.8

26.9

Financial liabilities from tenant financing

104.7

1.9

9.5

Derivative financial liabilities

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Purchase price liabilities from put options/rights to reimbursement

36.8

0.7

2.2

33.9

Cash flow hedges stand-alone interest rate derivatives

65.6

22.7

22.0

67.8

Cash flow hedges (cross currency swap) USD in €

-15.7

-10.4

-10.4

-31.3

-185.0

Cash flow hedges (cross currency swap) in €

 

8.5

8.5

25.4

185.0

Deferred interest from swaps

3.8

3.8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In April 2014, Vonovia issued a subordinated hybrid bond with terms and conditions stating that the issuer has its first special right of termination after five years. This bond was repaid in full in April 2019. In September 2019, a buyback offer was made to the investors holding two outstanding EMTN bonds due to mature in March and December 2020. This offer resulted in approx. 40% of the outstanding nominal volume of the two bonds being bought back, meaning that the maturity amounts of these instruments fell from an original amount of € 500 million to € 301 million in March, and from an original amount of € 1,250 million to € 752 million in December.

Credit Line

In October 2018, Vonovia concluded a syndicated revolving credit facility of € 1,000 million with several banks, led by Commerzbank AG, via its Dutch financing company. This unsecured credit line runs until October 2021 and is subject to interest on the basis of EURIBOR plus a mark-up. This credit line had not been used as of December 31, 2019.

Project-specific credit lines totaling around € 112.9 million were available on the reporting date in connection with bank-financed development projects. The nominal amount of these agreements totals € 243.2 million. These credit lines can be utilized based on the progress of the construction work, provided that corresponding evidence is submitted, taking the contractually agreed payment requirements into account.

There is also a guarantee credit agreement in place between Vonovia and Commerzbank for an original amount of € 10 million. This agreement was increased to € 25 million in December 2019. Bills of exchange of approximately € 7.3 million had been drawn from this amount as of the end of the fiscal year. A second guarantee credit agreement originally totaling € 50 million was canceled without replacement in the course of the third quarter of 2019. There is another guarantee credit agreement with Raiffeisen Bank International AG in the amount of € 5 million within the conwert subgroup. It had not been drawn by the end of the fiscal year. A guarantee credit agreement with Landesbank Baden-Württemberg in the amount of € 0.75 million was repaid and canceled in the fourth quarter of 2019.

Within the BUWOG subportfolio, there were four guarantee lines that can be used on a revolving basis with UniCredit Bank Austria AG, Atradius Credit Insurance N.V., Swiss Re International SE and VHV Allgemeine Versicherung AG. In December 2019, new contracts were concluded by Atradius Credit Insurance N.V., Swiss Re International SE and VHV Allgemeine Versicherung AG with Vonovia SE. The guarantees outstanding under the original contracts with Atradius and Swiss Re were transferred to these new contracts. These original guarantee lines were terminated in December 2019. The transfer of the guarantees outstanding under the original contract with VHV and the termination of this agreement is scheduled for implementation in the first quarter of 2020. As of December 31, 2019, the total volume available under general guarantee agreements came to € 123 million, € 21.5 million of which had been drawn by the reporting date. In addition, a project-specific development financing arrangement with Berliner Volksbank eG allows for the possibility of making use of bills of exchange, bonds and/or guarantees. On the reporting date, an amount of € 14.9 million was used.

In April 2019, Victoria Park AB entered into a revolving line of credit of SEK 1,050 million with a two-year term with Commerzbank. Vonovia SE acts as the guarantor for this line of credit.

In November 2017, Vonovia concluded a master commercial paper agreement via its Dutch financing company with a total volume of € 500 million with Commerzbank AG as lead arranger and several banks as traders. This master program was increased to a total volume of € 1,000 million in September 2018. Issues in the amount of € 300 million were outstanding under this program as of December 31, 2019.

All in all, Vonovia has cash on hand and deposits at banking institutions of € 500.7 million on the reporting date (Dec. 31, 2018: € 547.7 million). The master credit agreements/the commercial paper program, together with the cash on hand, guarantee Vonovia’s ability to pay at all times.

We refer to the information on financial risk management in the management report.

Rating
Classification of debtors or securities with regard to their creditworthiness or credit quality according to credit ratings. The classification is generally performed by rating agencies.
Covenants
Requirements specified in loan agreements or bond conditions containing future obligations of the borrower or the bond obligor to meet specific requirements or to refrain from undertaking certain activities.