The Information Management Network/Fabozzi ABS East conference, held from Oct. 2-5 at the Atlantis Resort in Paradise Island, Bahamas, will look to build on the recent success of its Global Securitization Forum held in Barcelona this past June, the largest ABS event to date. With increases in sponsors and attendance, IMN director Scott Brody fully expects 1800-plus attendees, making it the largest ABS East event ever.
The main draw, according to Brody, is the fact that every major issuer, investor and underwriter will be represented on various speaking panels with an increasing presence in the coverage of CDO and credit derivative markets.
"This event has a total of over 105 sponsors supporting it, up from 96 last year, and the Atlantis is completely sold out and we are seeing spillover, so attendance is expected to top last year's 1,650 attendees," Brody said. And in a time of corporate cost-cutting Brody notes that companies' increased presence at the conference is proof of its importance in the ABS market.
The opening general session, moderated by Brian Clarkson of Moody's Investors Service, covers the gamut of issuer, underwriter and investor representatives and even features a couple of new names. The panel will consist of Dianne Wold of GMAC-RFC. and Vernon Wright of MBNA on the issuer side. Heads of global securitization Phil Weingord of Deutsche Banc, Ted Breck of Merrill Lynch and George Graham of Salomon Smith Barney will represent the underwriters. Dan Stachell of State Street Global and Michele Russell-Dow of Hyperion Capital will represent the investor community.
For the most part, sessions will focus on the standby topics: developments in the credit card, auto and mortgage-related asset classes, according to Brody. This year IMN has expanded its coverage of the growing sectors of the ABS market, namely the CDO and credit derivative classes.
Panels discussing the collateralized debt obligation market are titled "New CDO Products," "CDOs of ABS/MBS/CDOs," "Trends in Cash Flow & Market Value CDOs," as well as the analyst roundtable "Finding Relative Value in the CDO Market."
In derivatives markets, panels titled "Use of Swaps in ABS Transactions" and "Application of Credit Derivatives in Securitization," tackle the subject.
One of the hot trends of the year, the securitization of offshore RMBS, will be fully represented at the conference for the first time, Brody added, with market partipants including Chris Fielding from Abbey National Treasury, David Johnson of North Rock and Tim Cooley of Kensington Mortgage making appearances.