THFC unveils £2bn sustainable finance vehicle for housing associations
The Housing Finance Corporation (THFC) has unveiled a £2 billion finance vehicle designed to help housing associations deliver on their sustainability objectives across new and existing homes.
THFC Sustainable Finance (TSF) has been assigned ‘A’ long-term and ‘A-1’ short-term ratings with stable outlook by Standard & Poor’s (S&P), reflecting the £8.4bn group’s credit strength and position as the UK social housing sector’s leading aggregator.
THFC completed the documentation on the £2bn EMTN programme for its new subsidiary today.
The vehicle will focus on issuing sustainable use of proceeds and sustainability bonds, which can be used to invest in both new and existing homes including retrofitting homes. This enables THFC to take its commitment to Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) one step further, with key pillars from the Sustainability Reporting Standard for Social Housing – the sector’s ESG standard – being integrated into core THFC issuance.
The availability of TSF will also provide clients with further flexibility, as the only aggregator able to issue through multiple funding vehicles rated by both Moody’s and S&P.
TSF will offer the same competitive terms as THFC’s £1.47bn subsidiary, bLEND, providing HAs with access to the capital markets in smaller amounts and also offering flexibility through deferred drawdowns.
S&P described TSF as “a core and integral part of THFC group”, which they expect to remain a leading UK social housing bond aggregator with management practices that will enable THFC to maintain a strong financial risk profile.
THFC Sustainable Finance is a wholly owned subsidiary of T.H.F.C. (Services) Ltd., the group’s main operating entity.
Fenella Edge, group treasurer at THFC, said: “Launching a new programme with an A stable rating alongside our bLEND programme, rated A2 by Moody’s, gives us two well-rated vehicles both of which will issue under THFC’s strong sustainability framework, and which we believe will be attractive to our investors and clients and sets us apart.”
Arun Poobalasingam, head of relationship management and business development, said: “As the sector continues to look at ways to solve the UK’s affordable housing shortage both through new supply but just as importantly investing in their existing homes, we will continue to come up with funding solutions that can help them do this.”