Dealflow | November 1, 2021

Citi issues $1 billion social finance bond for emerging markets

Roodgally Senatus
ImpactAlpha Editor

Roodgally Senatus

ImpactAlpha, November 1 — Citi has issued a $1 billion bond to advance social impact in emerging markets. Proceeds from the bond will be used to invest in expanding access to financial services, affordable housing, health and infrastructure, and education for underserved communities in emerging markets.

The social bond “is a great example of how we’re using our business capabilities to maximize the impact we can make as a bank, especially as we support emerging markets in their recovery from COVID-19,” said Citi’s Jane Fraser.

The bond is part of a trillion-dollar pledge to sustainable investing that includes creating access to essential services for 15 million low-income households, including 10 million women, in global underserved communities by 2030.

Emerging markets

Citi has built a 15-year track record investing in emerging markets. During that time, it has impacted 4 million unbanked and underbanked people, 3.5 million of which are women.

A recent deal: Greenlight Planet secured $75 million in sustainability-linked debt, backed by Citi, Norfund, Standard Bank Group and CDC Group to expand off-grid solar access for low-income communities in Kenya. The investment will help Greenlight reach 10 million households in the next five years.

Citi Impact Fund

Citi launched a $200 million impact fund last year to invest its own capital in companies addressing workforce development, financial inclusion, sustainable energy and water use, and high impact infrastructure.

Since then, it has backed more than 23 companies, more than half of which are led by women and/or people of color (for context, see “Citi Impact Fund adds seven new investments).