Sidley recently represented Australia-headquartered engineering consultancy Worley on the establishment of its US$2 billion Euro Medium Term Note Programme and its debut issue a EUR 500 million five-year sustainability-linked bond (SLB). The issue is the first public SLB transaction from an Australian corporate in any market and is Worley’s first-ever public capital markets deal. Worley is also the first issuer globally to execute its debut public transaction as a SLB. The transaction was also significant as it was both the largest issue size and the lowest coupon ever paid for any five-year euro issue by a BBB-rated Australian company.
The transaction is an important step in Worley’s decarbonization strategy as the deal is linked to a single bold key performance target of a 50% reduction in scope 1 and scope 2 CO2 greenhouse gas emissions from a 2020 baseline by 2025. The transaction is likely to set a precedent for other corporates in Australia looking into raising finance through SLBs and demonstrates how sustainability is an increasingly present theme on the agenda of management and investors alike globally. It is an interesting precedent for how non-European corporates can tap a growing market for sustainability-linked assets in Europe. At Sidley, we are increasingly advising on ESG-themed transactions and assisting clients in navigating this landscape.
The multi-office Sidley Capital Markets team was led by partner David Howe (London) and senior associate Benedetta Pacifico (London) with assistance from partner Bruce Dailey (Sydney), senior associate Raveen Chandrakumar (London), and associates Todd Gilbert (Los Angeles) and Stu Taylor (Sydney).