Sustainable Growth


We are pleased to have acted as Sole Lead Arranger and Sole Sustainability Coordinator for Sappi Limited’s R1.5 Billion sustainability-linked issuance facility.

Sappi Limited (“Sappi”), along with its subsidiaries, engages in the provision of materials made from wood fiber-based renewable resources in Europe, North America, and South Africa. The company manufactures and sells pulp, paper and packaging products. It also provides biomaterials, such as valida, lignin, furfural, and sweeteners, as well as forestry products. The company was founded in 1936 and is headquartered in Johannesburg, South Africa.

This issuance is the first sustainability-linked facility in the packaging and paper industry in South Africa, the largest sustainability-linked issuance in the South African bond market to date, and the only sustainability-linked issuance in South Africa with only upward margin ratchets. This issuance positions Sappi as a leader in climate action, and their transparent reporting sets a precedent for peers and drives the sustainability agenda within the sector. The Key Performance Indicators identified for this issuance will focus on reducing Sappi’s global GHG emissions and increasing the Sourcing of Certified Fibre supplied to Sappi’s mills in South Africa. These KPIs will enable Sappi’s focus on transitioning its operations to carbon neutrality and supporting small-scale farmers in its value chain, further enhancing the socio-economic landscape in South Africa.

This deal reflects Absa's commitment to client growth in line with sustainability best practice. Completion of this transaction was driven by the passion of Absa team’s understanding of Sappi’s long and short-term needs. The process was managed diligently, structuring and negotiating the best outcomes while mobilizing strong investor interest. The orderbook attracted more liquidity than any other corporate auction in 2024 to date and achieved an overall subscription rate of over 4x. Furthermore, Absa's sustainability expertise, going just beyond capital raising, aligned the issuance with best practice and demonstrated that by partnering with our clients, we are able to achieve outstanding results.

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