Primary care real estate investment trust Assura has announced the pricing of its first sustainability bond, a sterling-denominated senior unsecured bond in an amount of £300 million with a tenor of 12 years.
The bond will bear interest at a rate of 1.625% per annum and be issued by Assura Financing and guaranteed by Assura and a number of the Assura group’s subsidiaries.
Following the issuance of the bond, Assura’s weighted average debt maturity will increase from 8 years to 8.7 years and the pro forma weighted average cost of debt will reduce to 2.3%.
The bond is the first issued under the Assura Sustainable Finance Framework and the proceeds will be used to fund or refinance eligible green and social projects, specifically the acquisition, development or refurbishment of publicly accessible primary care and community healthcare centres with green building certification as appropriate.
Fitch Ratings currently assigns Assura an investment grade rating of A- (stable outlook) and Assura said it is expects the bond to get the same rating.
HSBC Bank and J.P. Morgan Securities acted as joint active bookrunners. Barclays Bank, NatWest Markets, Banco Santander and Stifel Nicolaus Europe acted as passive bookrunners. Assura was advised on the bond and credit rating by Rothschild & Co.
Assura’s chief financial officer Jayne Cottam said: “This is our first sustainability bond, following on from the social bond we issued in 2020, and has been met with a strong level of support from bond investors. We want to make a real difference through the spaces we create and manage. Our social impact strategy, SixBySix, aims to maximise our contribution to society and minimise our impact on the environment. The issuance of our first sustainability bond fits naturally with SixBySix with the proceeds being used to fund eligible green and social projects.”
Date published: June 29, 2021