Listed AgriNurture to raise 75 million euros from sale of 'green' bonds

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 29) — Farm produce wholesaler AgriNurture, Inc. is targetting to raise 75 million euros (P4.28 billion) worth of "sustainability funds" on the international capital markets, after it secured a "medium green" rating—claimed to be the first given to a Philippine agricultural firm.

The publicly listed company, which is led by businessman Antonio Tiu, announced in a statement on Monday it secured a Medium Green certification from international research and rating agency Cicero Shades of Green, allowing it to launch a 75-million-euro green bond, with a maturity of up to seven years.

Medium green is considered a high rating given to "projects and solutions that represent steps toward the long-term vision," ANI said. The firm said the rating echoes its "strong governance procedures and ambitions to improve further."

The group is hoping to be "climate neutral" by 2030 and pursue its targets in renewable energy and organic farming.

A green bond provides a chance for companies to have access to much-needed financing for their environmental and climate-related projects.

Proceeds from the bond issue will be used for its agricultural project expansion geared toward climate change adaptation and minimized environmental footprint, the company said.

The funds will also finance its production and trade of fresh organic produce and implement projects with positive environmental benefits, ANI added.

ANI focuses on supplying home-grown fruits such as mango, banana, and pineapple to customers in Hong Kong, and Mainland China. It has also expanded to the Middle East and to different European regions.

Its earnings in the first nine months of 2020 soared by 503% to ₱355.21 million against the ₱58.92 million posted a year earlier, on the back of strong local sales.

Shares in ANI went up by 1.14% or 8 centavos to finish at ₱7.08 each on Monday.