Dechert Advises Manila Water Company on its debut international Bond, the first ASEAN sustainability bond by a corporate issuer out of the Philippines

August 03, 2020

Dechert LLP advised Manila Water Company, Inc. (Manila Water), the primary provider of water and used water services to over six million people in the East Zone of Metro Manila, on its debut US$500 million 4.375% Senior Sustainability Notes. The Notes represent Manila Water’s first international bond offering and will be listed on the Singapore Exchange (SGX). 

This transaction also represents the first bond issued by a Philippines company in accordance with the ASEAN Sustainability Bond Standard. BPI Capital Corporation, Citi, Credit Suisse, HSBC, Mizuho Securities and UBS were the joint bookrunners and lead managers for the transaction.

Net proceeds from the issuance are intended to refinance debt and fund programmed capital expenditures for 2020-2021, pursuant to Manila Water’s sustainable financing framework. The projects covered include sustainable water and wastewater management, terrestrial and aquatic biodiversity conservation and affordable basic infrastructure.

The Dechert team was led by Singapore-based partner Maria Tan Pedersen and London-based partner Patrick Lyons, supported by associates Nick Quarrie, Drew Singer and Amy Rees.

Commenting on the deal, Maria Tan Pedersen said, “We are proud to have supported Manila Water on its first bond issuance, particularly on this sustainability bond, which will seek to progress clean water and sanitation efforts in the city. This transaction is notably among the fastest debut bond issuances ever conducted, completed within three weeks from start to launch, demonstrating the strong track record of Dechert’s Corporate and Securities practice in advising innovative capital markets transactions in emerging markets.”

“This transaction demonstrates that the international capital markets continue to be very much open for high quality issuers, even in the context of the COVID-19 crisis. We are also delighted to have advised on another sustainability bond and demonstrate Dechert’s continued commitment to support sustainable finance and projects.  This is yet another “first-of-its-kind” transaction on which Dechert’s emerging markets team has advised”, said Patrick Lyons.

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