Thai Union Group PCL. (Thai Union), the world’s leading seafood processor, has successfully issued dual-tranche senior and unsecured Sustainability-Linked Bonds (SLB) totalling THB 6 billion to institutional investors.
The 5-year tranche of THB 4.5 billion was priced at 2.27 percent and the 10-year tranche of THB 1.5 billion was priced at 3.36 percent. This transaction reinforces the Company’s sustainability commitment and its support in helping develop sustainable capital markets in Thailand following its issuance of the first ever SLB in Thailand in July. Bank of Ayudhya Public Company Limited (Krungsri) is the Sole bookrunner and Sole arranger for this SLB offering.
This second Thai Union SLB represents Thai Union’s continued embrace of sustainable business practices, and is another significant step forward for Blue Finance—financing for projects benefiting oceans—and the seafood industry as a whole. Thai Union was recently ranked number one on the Seafood Stewardship Index (SSI) for the second consecutive time for its performance delivering against the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs).
TRIS Rating Co., Ltd. assigned this latest issue a rating of “A+” with a “Positive” outlook on November 4, 2021, demonstrating Thai Union’s credit strength and strong financial position as one of the world’s leading seafood processors.
This offering also continues to build on the momentum following the success of Thai Union and Thailand’s first SLB in July this year, and contains the same structure of step-up and/or step-down facilities related to the achievement of Sustainability Performance Targets (SPTs) under Thai Union’s Sustainability-Linked Financing Framework, where Sustainalytics is the Second Party Opinion, the external organization providing assessment on the Company’s Sustainability-Linked Financing Framework. Under this structure, the interest rate payable is adjusted up or down based on whether the Company achieves its agreed targets.
“Thai Union is committed to continuing to lead on the sustainability front under our global sustainability strategy, SeaChange®,” said Thiraphong Chansiri, President & CEO of Thai Union. “We are delighted to return to the Thai Baht bond market, which has provided great support to us and our sustainable development mission, and to further support the global move towards Sustainable Finance and Thai regulators who have issued regulations to support private Thai companies in Sustainable Finance.”
Chansiri said the dual tranche transaction provided Thai Union with an opportunity to engage new investors with different 5- and 10-year maturities, and allowed the Company to build on the reference benchmark SLB curve constructed by both 5- and 10- year for this issuance, and the 7- year that was issued in July 2021.
“The offering garnered strong demand of more than THB 10 billion, or over 2 times the offered amount, reflecting investors’ confidence in Thai Union’s strong business profile, financial performance, and continued sustainability commitment. We are also glad to see new investors, especially leading Asset Management companies in Thailand, participating in this transaction, in addition to government related funds and life insurance companies” Chansiri said.
Seiichiro Akita, President and Chief Executive Officer of Krungsri (Bank of Ayudhya PCL) said “As the business partner and financial advisor, Krungsri would like to congratulate the latest success of Thai Union in its issuance of the new series of the sustainability-linked bond. Thai Union has earned its place among the leading companies with a strong commitment to the sustainability journey. Moreover, such success reflects Krungsri’s determination to advance in sustainable banking and its focus on promoting and facilitating sustainable finance initiatives in all dimensions. This marks another milestone of Krungsri on its roadmap to be the best-in-class financial institution with high experience and expertise in the offering of sustainable financial products. The Bank aims to further progress and continue its contribution for Thailand to thrive on the facet of sustainability.”
Alisara Mahasandana, Assistant Governor, Financial Markets Operations Group, Bank of Thailand (BOT), said, “The issuance of Sustainability-Linked Bond reiterates the vision of Thai Union in committing to sustainability outcomes. Additionally, Krungsri and Thai Union also take the opportunity in the THOR Overnight Index Swap (THOR OIS) market to convert the cost of Sustainability-Linked Bond from fixed rate to floating rate referencing THOR which results in an effective funding cost management. The BOT, therefore, would like to express our appreciation to Krungsri and Thai Union for the continuous cooperation in promoting the widespread use of THOR and developing the funding instruments aiming for the sustainability achievement.”