News of 9 September 2021
Saur successfully completes an inaugural issue of Sustainability-Linked Bonds for EUR 950 million
Saur today successfully placed Sustainability-Linked Bonds for a total nominal amount of EUR 950 million. With this transaction, the Group refinanced its debt and extended its maturity. With an “Investment Grade” rating, this transaction demonstrates investors’ confidence in Saur’s new model, which has been led since January 2020 by its Executive Chairman, Patrick Blethon, with the support of its shareholder EQT. By focusing on ESG bonds linking the cost of financing to the achievement of concrete objectives in terms of environmental and social performance, the Group confirms its ambition to place social responsibility at the heart of its growth model, around its mission, Stand for Water.
This issue comprises two tranches of senior unsecured sustainability-linked bonds, including a tranche of EUR 450 million with a maturity of 4 years and an annual coupon of 0.125 % issued at a price of 99.773 % and a tranche of EUR 500 million with a maturity of 7 years and an annual coupon of 0.625 % issued at a price of 99.768 %. This issue and the issuer are rated Investment Grade BBB- by Standard & Poor’s and Fitch Ratings. A new senior revolving credit facility will also be put in place for an amount of EUR 250 million and a final maturity of 4.5 years.
The purpose of this transaction is to refinance the Group’s existing debt, enabling Saur to extend the maturity of its debt and diversify its sources of financing on optimal terms, in line with its strategic roadmap. The proceeds of the bond issue will be used to repay the Group’s debt and to pay the costs associated with the transaction.
The success of this operation is a major step for Saur
With a significant level of oversubscribed, this issue was very positively received and was placed with a diverse group of international investors. This demonstrates the confidence of investors in the Group’s new model, led by Patrick Blethon, Executive Chairman, with the support of its shareholder EQT, which places social responsibility at the heart of its business model. It also confirms the strength and resilience of Saur’s model: a pure playerin the water sector focused on high value-added services. The operation supports the Group’s ambitious ESG policy, by linking the cost of financing to environmental and social performance indicators. The document presenting these indicators and the commitments made by the Group is available at https://www.saur.com/publications-groupe-saur/.
Patrick Blethon, Executive Chairman of Saur, said: “The success of this refinancing enables Saur to establish a long-term financing structure while significantly reducing its cost of capital. This demonstrates investors’ confidence in the strength of our Group’s financial structure and the quality of its growth model. This transaction also gives us the opportunity to place our ESG ambition at the heart of our financing strategy. Saur is the first French group in its sector to have carried out a sustainability-linked bond issue.
Morgan Stanley, HSBC, BNP Paribas and Natixis acted as Global Coordinators and Joint Bookrunners. BofA Securities, CaixaBank, Crédit Agricole CIB and Société Générale acted as Joint Bookrunners.