As part of its ongoing commitment to the New World Sustainability Vision 2030 and environmental, social and governance (ESG) integration, New World Development Company Limited ("NWD", the "Company" or the "Group", Hong Kong stock code: 00017) is pleased to announce it has become the first corporate in the world to issue a USD-denominated social and green dual tranche offering in the public bond markets. With this transaction, NWD also becomes the first non-financial corporate in Asia to issue a USD-denominated Social bond in the public bond markets, as well as the first corporate in Greater China to issue a USD-denominated Green perpetual in the public bond markets.
The 5-year USD200 million Social bond (coupon rate: 5.875%), priced at T+290 basis points, and USD500 million Green perpetual bond (couple rate: 6.15%) were oversubscribed by nearly 5 times at its peak, with strong participation from over 100 quality investors on each tranche, including renowned fund managers, asset managers and private banks. The bonds were issued in Hong Kong under the Group’s Sustainable Finance Framework, which was recently refreshed to stay up-to-date with evolving international standards and best practice. The Company received a positive Second-Party Opinion of the framework from Sustainalytics, an independent global provider of ESG and corporate governance research and ratings to investors.
Edward Lau, Chief Financial Officer of NWD, said: "We are delighted to be the first corporate in the world to issue a USD-denominated social and green dual tranche offering in the public bond markets. The growth of social bonds is reflecting a diversification of sustainability objectives financed by investors. Corporations and financial institutions will become more active in the social bond market as the pandemic accelerates private issuers' interest in social considerations. And, while the recent surge may have been precipitated by Covid-19, the appeal of social bonds as a sustainable finance instrument may endure long after its effects have subsided."
Through the Green perpetual bond, the Group will continue its commitment to building sustainable cities and communities. NWD secured Hong Kong’s first green loan in 2018 and has since continued to actively leverage and innovate sustainable financing to generate momentum for sustainable development in the region. Last year, the Company became the first real estate developer in the world to price a USD-denominated Sustainability-Linked Bond, with a Sustainability Performance Target aligned to the Company’s “Renewable Energy Roadmap”, which will support the Company’s efforts to decarbonise under the Paris Climate Agreement’s 1.5°C scenario.
Additionally, the Company has a track record in achieving state-of-the-art certified green and healthy building designs and award-winning sustainable operations in buildings, such as K11 ATELIER King’s Road, one of the world’s first to achieve triple platinum green and healthy building certifications in WELL, LEED and BEAM Plus. Recently, as a testament to the Group’s contributions in this area, the Group led the Hong Kong Green Building Council (HKGBC) Green Building Award 2021, winning nine awards and accolades, including NWD’s prestigious Pioneer Award in the Green Building Leadership category among developers.
The banks involved in this transaction were HSBC, Mizuho Securities, Morgan Stanley, Standard Chartered and UBS as Joint Bookrunners. HSBC and UBS were also Joint Green Structuring Advisors and Joint Social Structuring Advisors.