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Emerged largest financial giant in Nigeria, Access Bank Plc., Monday announced the dual-listing of a fully certified Green Bond on the FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange and the Nigerian Stock Exchange.
This follows the formal approval of the bond by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Industry pundits say the Bond is the first of its kind to be issued by an African corporate and clearly represents a major milestone in the development of the local green finance market.
The N15 Billion, 5-year Fixed Rate Senior Unsecured Green Bond is rated AA- by Agusto & Co, the underlying framework is verified by PwC (UK) and certified by the Climate Bond Initiative as having met the Global Climate Bonds Standard. The issuance was fully subscribed by way of book build. The Bond is priced at a coupon of 15.5%, with participation from a wide range of asset managers and pension fund administrators.
The listing of the bond closely follows the completion of the Bank’s merger with Diamond Bank and the launch of its new brand identity that fuses the Bank and Diamond Bank’s visual identities symbolizing their shared philosophy.
The Green Bond issuance highlights the Bank’s commitment to sustainability and its status as a pioneer in green financing in both the domestic and international capital markets. The bond comes amidst a global drive for responsible and sustainable green financing and will allow the financing of new loans and refinancing of existing loans in accordance with the Bank’s Green Bond Framework. It will support projects directed at flood defense, solar generation facilities and agriculture.
Speaking on the occasion of this landmark listing, the Group Managing Director/CEO ofAccess Bank Plc, Herbert Wigwe, noted that “At Access Bank we are a pioneer in both domestic and international capital markets, leading the way with our commitment to sustainable banking. We hope that this bond issuance inspires other African companies to support the long-term development of the green finance market whilst simultaneously realizing the growth potential of the fast-developing low carbon economy.”
Praising Access Bank’s efforts in promoting sustainability in Africa through the financing of green projects, Justine Leigh-Bell, the Climate Bonds Deputy CEO averred that “This first Climate Bond certified corporate green bond out of Africa represents a major milestone in the development of the local green finance market.”
Continuing, Leigh-Bell added that “In addition to being an inspiration to other private companies, the leadership demonstrated by Access Bank is critical for the long term development of the green finance market in Nigeria and a great example for other African nations to follow.”
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