Last year was an exciting time for the region encompassing Eastern Europe, the ex-Soviet Union, the Middle East and Africa, known as EEMEA. Turkey pumped out transactions like a well-oiled future flows factory, Egypt produced a massive $1.5 billion export-backed deal, and Kazakhstan yielded its first-ever capital markets securitization.
Russia, in contrast, had a quiet 2005, with one loud exception, an auto loan-backed transaction that reverberated far more than its modest circumstances would suggest. As the first existing asset securitization out of the country and a harbinger of more to come, Russian Auto Loans Finance won the EEMEA Deal of the Year for 2005. The award covers all of EEMEA, except for South Africa, a bustling market that nonetheless falls outside ASR's purview.