Primary Debt Market Fabric

Founded: September 2018

Product: A multi-currency, multi-product over-the-counter (OTC) platform, digitalising primary debt market workflows for all actors across the value chain. Includes ESG and debt solutions, and a real-time market data module.

Overview: Founded in 2018, Onbrane focuses on digitalising the short-term primary debt market in Europe, aimed at debt negotiation and issuance processes for some of the largest public, private companies, and financial institutions.

Onbrane was created by a group of technologists and a large issuer that wanted a new way to negotiate and issue commercial paper. The meeting revealed the complexity of the industry processes, its pain points, and the lack of a platform and solution providers.

Starting from the short-term debt market, the company’s goal is to modernise the negotiation, issuance, and settlement of all debt products by bringing together all stakeholders in a single, secure digital environment. The result is a multi-product, multi-currency OTC platform, built with and for the market community, now used daily by international issuers, dealers/brokers, investors, paying agents, and clearers.

Technically, Onbrane is a digital bridge between different stages of debt issuance, created through APIs, enabling a full STP process. The platform can be integrated with any third-party software used by the debt market actors (such as TMS, OMS, clearers, FX software). Onbrane helps automate repetitive manual tasks and provides a full audit trail.

The platform covers all types of negotiation: purchase by a dealer or via a broker; bilateral negotiation on all characteristics via an offer-counter-offer system; and the possibility to sell papers purchased on Onbrane outside of the platform. 

Today, its role is the negotiation, issuance, and distribution of vanilla, sustainable, and asset-backed debt products, providing all counterparties with services from pre-trade to debt distribution. The platform provides market intelligence aimed at helping primary debt market actors improve their decision-making.

In September 2022, Onbrane announced a partnership with Nasdaq for the launch of Nasdaq Primary. The solution helps companies digitalise the process of raising debt capital by bringing all market actors together on one platform. Onbrane connects counterparties and enables the negotiation and issuance of debt in a standardised format, which it says potentially reaches deals faster and more securely by avoiding manual data entries.

In May 2023, the treasury of German promotional bank KfW made its first Euro CP issuance on Obrane, with programme dealer ING. KfW is one of the largest CP issuers worldwide. It will now manage parts of its €90bn commercial paper programme through Onbrane. National promotional banks act as financial intermediaries for European Investment Bank (EIB) Group investments directed to small-scale projects.

The firm has ambition to change for the better one of the last bastions of manual processing in the financial system.

Clients: All market players can access the platform including financial/non-financial/supranational issuers, dealers, brokers, asset managers, and institutional investors. Currently, Onbrane has 100+ users, including Societe Generale, BNP Paribas, ING, SEB, Acoss, Hexagon, Unédic, Elis, Tradition, bioMérieux, Crédit Municipal de Paris, BASF, KfW, BNP Paribas Asset Management, AXA Investment Managers.

Sample client feedback:

Michel Gregory, Senior Front Officer – Treasury & Risk Management, Engie

For us, it is really in the back-office part that there is a big saving of time. The advantage of this platform is that it does not change our market habits; we keep the same relationship with the dealers and brokers.

Markus Schmidtchen, Head of Treasury, KfW

By using Onbrane’s platform, we are creating a ‘one-stop’ digital interface to our partner banks. This contributes to the further automation of our processes and an increased level of digitalisation.

Jun Dumolard, CFO, Unédic

Onbrane is modernising the issuance and settlement of commercial papers by bringing together all stakeholders in a single, efficient, and secure environment.

Active region(s): Europe, US

Partners: Nasdaq

Employees: 20

Funding: Onbrane has raised a total of €2.2m in funding over three rounds. Its latest funding was raised on September 30 from a pre-SERIES A round.

Onbrane is funded by 40 investors, mostly business angels.

Ownership: 66% of shares are still in the hands of founders and employees.

Elevator pitch: “Since 2018, Onbrane has been working to solve well-identified pain points of the primary debt market by bringing all the market actors together on one connected platform, simplifying their interactions while respecting current user codes and neutrality. The result is a multi-product, multi-currency OTC platform, covering the debt financing needs of corporate, public, and financial institutions.” 

Website: www.onbrane.com

Email: [email protected]

Phone:+33 (0) 1 40 76 09 51

TMI view: By digitally shifting the existing somewhat archaic CP markets up several gears, Onbrane is offering a solution that in its short life so far has attracted some big names. This suggests it is answering a genuine need, and doing it rather well.

Verdict: The firm has ambition to change for the better one of the last bastions of manual processing in the financial system. It needs to move beyond its French stronghold but given its target market, there is no reason to see why it won’t.