Sanofi successfully issued its €650m inaugural sustainability-linked bond issuance

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Natixis acted as Global Coordinator and Sustainability Structuring Advisor for Sanofi’s inaugural sustainability-linked bond issuance.

On Wednesday March 30th, Sanofi, the French leading biopharmaceutical company, successfully priced a dual tranche 3-Y 850 m senior bond and 7-Y 650 m inaugural sustainability-linked bond tied to Sanofi’s commitment to improve access to essential medicines in low- and lower-middle-income countries via its global health nonprofit unit, Sanofi Global Health (SGH).

The transaction quickly raised investors’ appetite, allowing the issuer to significantly tighten its spread at guidance. Sanofi’s strong credit combined with a wisely chosen KPI, helped to build momentum on the transaction and made possible an outstanding outcome achieving the tightest spread in 10 years for a corporate 3 Y+ transaction, pricing at MS flat on the 3-Y and MS+ 13 bps on the 7-Y, well below its secondary curve.

Sanofi is committed to provide treatments to 1.5 million patients, provided with essential medicines by SGH for the treatment of non-communicable diseases in 40 Low Income Countries (LICs) Lower Middle-Income Countries (LMICs), between 2022 and 2026 (cumulative target), when the baseline is 140,000 patients served in 2019, setting a trajectory to increase the annual number of patients by 300% compared to 2019. In case of target missed, the initial coupon would be increased by 25 bps (payable on the next interest period and until maturity).

Previous attempts to tackle the challenge of Non-Communicable Diseases (NDC) in LMICs and LICs under either a traditional commercial model or philanthropic approaches have demonstrated the difficulties to scale up and reach vulnerable population in need over the long run. Hence, SGH tends to create an innovative and sustainable “not for profit approach”, supported by its economic robustness, an integrated model including financing for support programs for chronic disease management that will guarantee long-term sustainability.

This transaction has been issued under Sanofi’s overarching Sustainability-Linked Bond Framework structured with the assistance of Natixis Green & Sustainable Hub to become a repeat issuer of sustainable finance instruments, designed with three other sustainability KPIs encompassing Sanofi’s expanded social impact strategy.

Table 1: Selected Key Performance Indicators in Sanofi’s SLB Framework

KPIs / SPTs

2025

2026

2030

Climate KPIs

KPI #1: Absolute GHG emissions scope 1&2 reduction

SPT1.1 30% reduction of absolute scope 1&2 GHG emissions by 2025 from a 2019 base year

 

SPT 1.2 : 55% reduction of absolute scope 1&2 GHG emissions by 2030 from a 2019 base year

KPI #2: Absolute GHG emissions scope 3 reduction

 

 

SPT 2.1 : 14% reduction of absolute scope 3 GHG emissions by 2030 from a 2019 base year

Access to Medicines KPIs

KPI #3: Provision by SGH of essential medicines in LICs and LMICs 
(KPI used in the SLB issuance)

 

SPT 3.1 : Provide treatments to 1.5 million patients by the end of 2026 starting from 2022 (cumulative)
(SPT used in the SLB issuance)

 

KPI #4: Beneficiaries of SGH healthcare programs in LICs and LMICs

 

 

SPT 4.1 : Reach 400,000 beneficiaries of SGH programs between 2022 and 2026 (cumulative)

 

This inaugural transaction demonstrates Sanofi’s commitment to society, to ensure access to healthcare for the world’s most vulnerable people, as one of the substantial contributions recognized by the Platform in its final report on a potential EU Social Taxonomy (see our article EU Social Taxonomy Proposal: simpler and meaningful but half-way through).

 

To go further:

  • Framework, SPO and Investor Presentation, available here
  • Press release, available here