AC Energy issues $60 million green bonds
Danessa Rivera (The Philippine Star) - July 3, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines  — AC Energy Inc. has topped up its senior green bonds with a fresh issuance of $60 million via private placement to fund renewable energy expansion in the region.

The bonds have a term of five years due 2024. This brought the total green bond issuance to $470 million, consisting of $360 million due 2024 and $110 million due 2029. Issued by wholly owned subsidiary AC Energy Finance International Limited, the green bonds were issued under AC Energy’s $1-billion medium term note program established in 2019.

“AC Energy’s green bonds further strengthen our liquidity and enable us to continue scaling up our renewable investments despite the challenging environment,” AC Energy president and chief executive officer Eric Francia said.

 “We are committed to transition to a low carbon portfolio and work towards our goal of reaching 5,000 MW of renewables capacity by 2025,” he added. As of the end of March, AC Energy had allocated around $455 million to 11 renewable energy projects spanning Vietnam, Indonesia and the Philippines, with a combined capacity of around 1,600 megawatts (MW).

These include investments in new greenfield projects onshore and in Vietnam as well as the acquisition of additional stakes in renewable energy projects in the Philippines. AC Energy currently has 180 MW of solar projects under construction in the Philippines, and over 200 MW of solar and wind projects being constructed in Vietnam. “We are pleased to see the significant deployment of AC Energy’s green bond in various renewable projects. We continue to find ways to support the company’s expansion into renewables across the region,” said Michael Barrow, Asian Development Bank Private Sector Operations Department director general. For the latest green bonds, the private placement was priced in line with current market prices as AC Energy locked in competitive rates in the midst of challenging market conditions.

The Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corp. Ltd. was appointed as dealer for the bonds. Proceeds from the issuance will be used to finance eligible green projects in accordance with AC Energy’s green bond framework. AC Energy first launched its green bonds in January 2019, which were the first Climate Bond Initiative-certified US dollar denominated green bonds listed in Southeast Asia, anchored by investments from International Finance Corp. and the ADB. Subsequently in November of the same year, AC Energy raised $400 million through the first ever US dollar denominated fixed-for-life green bond issued globally. For the issuances,

AC Energy received global recognition as Best New Green Bond Issuer from London-based International Finance, and from Hong Kong’s The Asset for Best Green Bond and Best Issuer for Sustainable Finance (Corporate) in the Philippines. Additionally, the company’s perpetual green bond was awarded Best Corporate Bond in Asia Pacific by The Banker during its Deals of the Year Awards 2020.

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