L-R: Mr. Herbert Wigwe, Group Managing Director/CEO, Access Bank PLC, Ms. Kaodi Ugoji, Associate Executive Director, Corporate Development, FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange, Mrs. Olukemi Awodein, Managing Director, Chapel Hill Denham Advisory Limited, during the signing of the Bond Listing Register at the Listing Ceremony for the Pioneer Climate Bond Certified Green Bond – Access Bank PLC Green Bond at FMDQ’s Exchange Place, Lagos.Globally, the green bond market has shown exponential growth as government and corporate entities are raising funds from the debt capital markets (DCM) to finance climate and environmentally friendly projects to support the development of their countries. Access Bank PLC (Access Bank), has set the pace for other corporate issuers, by listing the first Climate Bond Certified Corporate Green Bond in Africa – the Access Bank PLC N15.00 billion 5-year 15.50% Fixed Rate Senior Unsecured Green Bond due 2024 – on FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange (FMDQ or the Securities Exchange), and this is a laudable feat for Access Bank, addressing environmental challenges as well as championing development in the Nigerian DCM. The Green Bond was offered to qualified institutional investors, with participation from Pension Fund Administrators (PFAs) and high net worth individuals. The proceeds from the issuance will be used to finance/re-finance eligible green assets and projects that will support the delivery of a low-carbon economy.
This issuance is the first corporate bond to benefit from the Nigerian Green Bond Market Development Programme launched in June 2018, by FMDQ, Climate Bonds Initiative (CBI), and the Financial Sector Deepening Africa (FSD Africa), to provide training/capacity development for regulators, issuers, investors and intermediaries, amongst others, as part of efforts to introduce green bonds as an investible instrument in the Nigerian DCM that can be tapped to close the huge infrastructure gap.
To commemorate these remarkable achievements, FMDQ hosted the issuer, Access Bank, represented by the Group Managing Director/CEO, Mr. Herbert Wigwe, and other representatives of Access Bank. Also present at the Ceremony were the sponsor of the issue and the Registration Member (Listings) of FMDQ, Chapel Hill Denham Advisory Limited, represented by its Managing Director, Mrs. Kemi Awodein, and representatives from the Joint Issuing House, Coronation Merchant Bank Limited, as well as the solicitors to the listing, Aluko & Oyebode, Wigwe & Partners and other parties to the issue.
Ms. Tumi Sekoni, Associate Executive Director, Capital Markets, FMDQ, whilst welcoming the guests gathered to commemorate this commendable feat, congratulated the issuer for the successful issue of the pioneer Climate Bond Certified Green Bond in the Nigerian DCM. She highlighted that this green bond would help address climate and environmental challenges in a sustainable manner to deliver prosperity for Nigerians and further deepen the domestic DCM by increasing the range of investible debt securities in the markets, invariably contributing to Nigeria’s development. She further reiterated FMDQ’s commitment to continue to create awareness and drive education for green financing, thereby facilitating the development of the green bond market in Nigeria.
Mr. Herbert Wigwe, during the issuer’s special address, stated “with our pace-setting experience in the mainstreaming of sustainability in our business operations, we are confident that this issue will further help in supporting environmentally friendly investors to meet their investment objectives. It will also simultaneously support Access Bank’s customers towards realizing growth opportunities in a fast-developing low-carbon economy”.
L-R: Mr. Roosevelt Ogbonna, Group Deputy Managing Director, Access Bank PLC; Ms. Tumi Sekoni, Associate Executive Director, Capital Markets, FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange; Mr. Herbert Wigwe, Group Managing Director/CEO, Access Bank PLC, Ms. Kaodi Ugoji, Associate Executive Director, Corporate Development, FMDQ OTC Securities Exchange, during the presentation of mementos to the Issuer at the Listing Ceremony for the Pioneer Climate Bond Certified Green Bond – Access Bank PLC Green Bond at FMDQ’s Exchange Place, Lagos.
Delivering the Registration Member (Listings) remarks, Mrs. Kemi Awodein, highlighted, “Chapel Hill Denham is proud to have acted as lead arranger and financial adviser to Access Bank on Nigeria’s and Africa’s first Climate Bond Certified Corporate Green Bond. This is another first-of-a-kind deal for both Access Bank and Chapel Hill Denham, and this demonstrates our leadership in DCM innovation and our commitment to doing work that delivers positive impact for Nigeria’s future. A commitment to advancing sustainable development goals is imperative in Nigerian and debt markets provide us many solutions”.
Ms. Kaodi Ugoji, Associate Executive Director, Corporate Development, FMDQ, in her closing remarks, applauded the issuer for achieving this landmark, stating that this is yet another highly exemplary and indeed, positive step towards addressing some of the climate and environmental challenges in the nation. She also commended the sponsor to the issue and Registration Member (Listings) of FMDQ for their concerted efforts towards ensuring the success of the issuance. She further reiterated the advantages of issuing green instruments to help tackle some of the environmental challenges in Nigeria and stated that FMDQ, as an Exchange with a passion for developing the Nigerian DCM, will continue to work closely with reputable institutions such as FSD Africa, CBI to develop the green bond market in Nigeria through the Nigerian Green Bond Market Development Programme.