In a world first for the retail property sector, the QIC Shopping Centre Fund (QSCF) has issued an AUD300 million Climate Bond-certified green bond, enabled by QICGRE's commitment to enhancing environmental performance across its Australian retail portfolio.
Managing Director of QICGRE, Michael O’Brien, said: “Issuing a green bond is an important milestone for QSCF and the retail property sector globally, and is an endorsement of QICGRE’s progress and ongoing focus on sustainability.
“For QICGRE, delivering sustainability initiatives such as upgrades and the intelligent automation of centre plant and equipment, and installing LED lighting, generates strong commercial outcomes, as well as reducing our environmental footprint.
“This is why we have been on a pathway of environmental performance enhancement as we continue to evolve our assets into retail-led, mixed-use destinations.
“The QSCF green bond was five times oversubscribed and attracted new investors with green and ESG investment mandates to the Fund from across Asia and Australia,” Mr O’Brien said.
QSCF is one of QICGRE’s flagship investment vehicles, with interests in retail assets across Australia valued at circa AUD15 billion (as at June 2019).
Fund Manager of QSCF, Michael Fattouh, said: “We are continuing to progress opportunities to align QSCF’s capital management strategy, that seeks to diversify its sources of funding, with QICGRE’s strategy of driving sustainability initiatives across our retail portfolio.
“In an Australian retail property first, in 2017 the Clean Energy Finance Corporation (CEFC) collaborated with QSCF via an AUD200 million senior debt facility which included a framework to undertake improvements in energy performance across QSCF’s shopping centre portfolio.
“Building on this collaboration, we are very pleased that the CEFC has also made a cornerstone investment of AUD30 million in the QSCF green bond.
“We continue to explore a range of opportunities in the area of green financing as a viable method of diversifying our sources of funding and achieving sustained environmental improvements at the assets we own and manage on behalf of our investors.”