ACEN has become one of the country’s leading issuers of Green Bonds in line with the goal of raising funds to enable the company’s robust renewables pipeline.
The company made its capital markets debut in February 2019 with the issuance of US$410 million in Climate Bond Initiative (CBI)-certified Green Bonds listed on the Singapore Exchange (SGX), with strong support from top multilateral development institutions such as the International Finance Corporation (IFC) and Asian Development Bank (ADB).
Within the same year, the company issued US$400 million of green perpetual fixed-for-life (FFL) bonds. Fixed-for-life bonds are only issued by select institutions since these securities have no maturity and can be considered as quasi-equity. At the start of the pandemic in early 2020, ACEN issued an additional US$60 million in senior dated 5-year bonds, following an unsolicited offer by a well-known investment fund. Also within the same year and despite the pandemic, the company issued another US$300 million of green perpetual FFL bonds as liability management of the 2019 FFL bonds. This was a judicious liability management strategy, taking advantage of the all-time low interest rate environment then.
In 2021, still in the middle of the pandemic, ACEN issued its maiden green perpetual FFL bonds at a very competitive rate of 4%, raising US$400 million, right before the markets for US$ perpetual bonds softened. All US$ bonds of the company are listed and actively traded in the SGX.
In 2022, ACEN issued its maiden peso-denominated green bonds totaling ₱10 billion, generating an oversubscription of 8x. As of end-August 2023, ACEN raised an equivalent of US$1.8 billion in US$ and peso-denominated green bonds under.
In the equity capital markets, the maiden issuance and listing of ACEN’s peso denominated preferred shares totalling P25 billion became the largest capital market issuance of peso denominated preferred shares in the PSEI since 2016. The said issuance includes Series B, accounting for 67% of total issued preferred shares, the first-ever fixed for life (FFL) peso denominated preferred shares without any step-up feature while the balance of 33% has a low step-up rate.
Private Placement by GIC
As ACEN was wrapping up its acquisition of PHINMA Energy, GIC Private Limited, the reputable investment holding arm of the Singapore Government, was looking to invest in nascent regional businesses with high-growth opportunities. In March 2021, Arran acquired 4 million primary common shares, or 17.5% of ACEN for Php 12 billion.
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