Environmental Finance's Bond Awards 2022

Social bond of the year - local authority/municipality: City of Toronto

The City of Toronto has scooped the award for Social bond of the year – local authority/municipality in the Environmental Finance Bond Awards for the second year in a row.

It raised C$100 million ($79 million) by re-opening the 2020 issue to finance capital projects under the City's Social Debenture Programme.

Mayor John ToryThat programme focuses on objectives such as social and affordable housing, affordable basic infrastructure, access to essential services and socioeconomic advancement and empowerment.

The transaction saw participation from 29 institutional investors and was approximately 2.5 times oversubscribed, pricing with approximately 2.5 basis points (bps) of savings versus its conventional curve, says the City.

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) investors accounted for roughly 80% of the final order book. Ten of the investors were new primary buyers of the City of Toronto's Social Debenture Framework, as well as three new primary investors to the City of Toronto name.

"I am proud that Toronto is once again being recognized for its leadership in the green, social and sustainability bond market," said John Tory, Mayor of Toronto. "The success of our second social bond issuance demonstrates the continued confidence the market and investors have in Toronto and our responsible fiscal management before and during the pandemic."

One awards judge commented that the City of Toronto is a "leader in the sustainable debt market for Canadian municipalities," adding that "the allocation brings about a tangible sustainable impact".

Deal Highlights

Issuer: City of Toronto
Sector: Municipality
Instrument: Social bond
Issue size: C$100 million ($79 million)
Maturity date: 2 December 2030
Coupon: 1.6%
Lead managers: Bank of Montreal, CIBC, National Bank Financial, RBC Capital Markets
Use of Proceeds: Socioeconomic advancement, housing infrastructure development and access to essential services
External review/Second opinion: Sustainalytics
Credit rating: Moody's (Aa1), S&P (AA), DBRS Morningstar (AA)
Principles/Guidelines: Social Bond Principles