Environmental Finance's Bond Awards 2023

Sustainability bond of the year - supranational: World Bank

Andrea DoreA dual-tranche sustainability bond issued by the World Bank in September 2022 for $4.5 billion was the first of its kind in the sovereign, supranational or agency (SSA) market.

The transaction attracted over 115 orders totalling more than $5.7 billion with demand from central banks, banks, pension funds, insurers and asset managers.

The dual-tranche offering enabled the World Bank to reach a more "diverse" range of investors globally as one tranche had a fixed rate and the other a floating rate, the organisation said.

One judge commended the structure, while another praised the World Bank's "long track record of issuing impactful sustainability bonds".

The proceeds will be used to finance activities designed to achieve positive social and environmental impacts and outcomes.

Andrea Dore, global head of funding at the World Bank Treasury, said that during 2020, the World Bank raised a "record" amount of funding of over $70 billion despite volatile macroeconomic conditions. Since then, the World Bank has returned to normal funding levels. Bond investors have become increasingly focused on impact as well as returns, Dore said.

Heike ReicheltHeike Reichelt, head of investor relations and sustainable finance at the World Bank Treasury, said: "When investors buy our bonds, they know that these funds are being used for activities that are designed for positive impact. This is becoming more and more important for investors."

The World Bank aims to eliminate extreme poverty by reducing the percentage of people living on less than $1.9 a day to 3% and promote shared prosperity by fostering income growth for the bottom 40% of the population in every developing country by 2030.

Deal highlights:

Issuer: World Bank
Size: $1.5 billion and $3 billion
Maturity: 23 September, 2026 and 21 September, 2029
Coupon: For the SOFR, compounded SOFR+ 31 bps, payable quarterly; For the fixed, 3.625% semi-annual
Use of proceeds: World Bank bonds support the financing of a combination of green and social, i.e. "sustainable development", projects, programs, and activities in IBRD member countries. See IBRD's Sustainable Development Bond Framework for examples of such eligible projects, programs, and activities. See examples here.
Lead and co-lead managers: Barclays; BMO Capital Markets; BNP Paribas; CastleOak Securities; Citigroup; Credit Agricole CIB; Daiwa Capital Markets Europe; Deutsche Bank; Goldman Sachs; HSBC; ICBC; JP Morgan; Merrill Lynch International; Mesirow Financial; Morgan Stanley; National Bank of Canada; Nomura; RBC Capital Markets; Scotiabank; Toronto-Dominion Bank; Wells Fargo