French bank BNP Paribas has won the lead manager of the year award for both bank-issued social bonds and sovereign sustainability bonds, as well as securing a highly commended for its work on corporate green bonds.
For social bonds from banks, judges were particularly impressed by the work of BNP Paribas in Asia and, specifically, for those issued in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Among the key deals that BNP Paribas was involved in were the $500 million Covid-19 social bond from Shinhan Financial Group and $500 million NH Nonghyup Bank social bond both in July 2020 as well as the ShinhanCard $400 million bond in October 2020.
Outside of Covid-19 responses social bonds, BNP Paribas was also involved in both the social covered bonds from Korea Housing Finance Corporation (KHFC) – €1 billion in January 2020 and €500 million in June 2020 – and the $500 million Shriram Transport Finance.
The Environmental Finance Bond Award judges were particularly impressed by the "important role" that the bank has played in developing the social bond market, and its ongoing interaction with issuers and investors about ways to increase social issuance.
BNP Paribas was also prominent in its role supporting sustainability bond issuance by sovereigns. Of the three sustainability bonds issued by sovereigns during the award period, BNP Paribas was involved in two of them: the €1.5 billion bond from Luxembourg and €750 million Mexican Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) bond, both in September 2020. These deals were both the first sovereign sustainability bonds in Europe and first-ever sovereign SDG bond, respectively.
The bank also secured a 'highly commended' for its lead manager work in the corporate green bond market. Judges commended its "very strong" market position and how it has embedded its sustainability experts into its issuance team and practices extensive outreach with investors.
Since the start of 2020, BNP Paribas has acted as lead manager for over 90 green bonds from corporates – helping them to raise $93 billion. Among the deals that BNP Paribas have been involved in the €1 billion inaugural green bond from German carmaker Daimler in September and the €700 million high yield green bond from Eurotunnel operator GetLink in October in Europe, the $1 billion Xyelm issue in June and $1.35 billion note from Equinix in October in the US, and the two green bonds from Zhenro Properties and the $1 billion note from SK Hynix in Asia.