CIMB Bank Berhad (“CIMB” or “the Bank”) has entered into an RM270 million sustainability-linked term loan facility agreement with Malaren International Sdn. Bhd., a subsidiary of StarHub Group (“StarHub”), a leading Singapore provider of communications, information and entertainment services. This marks the Bank’s first sustainability-linked loan (“SLL”) since announcing its SLL offering in January 2020, with a commitment of RM3 billion to SLL for corporate borrowers. The SLL also marks StarHub’s maiden loan linked to sustainability performance targets.
Sustainability is an integral part of both CIMB and StarHub’s strategy and operations. As an organisation that can influence sustainability best practices among its network, CIMB aims to steer clients towards adopting responsible business practices through mitigating negative impacts whilst enabling and incentivising positive corporate behaviours. Providing this SLL is part of this sustainability approach, which facilitates corporate borrowers who are keen to enhance their sustainability performance in alignment with one or more of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (“SDGs”).
Gurdip Singh Sidhu, Group Chief Strategy & Design Officer, CIMB Group, said, “We are pleased to announce our very first SLL. This facility is especially meaningful as it brings two large organisations together in this maiden Malaysia – Singapore cross-border sustainability- linked transaction. It is a testament also to CIMB’s commitment in driving the sustainability agenda across ASEAN. Since announcing our SLL offering early this year, we are encouraged by the high levels of interest amongst clients in Malaysia as well as the region.
StarHub’s commitment and transformation to become a more responsible and sustainable business began in 2008. It has since implemented many sustainable and green practices across the business, including tackling electronic waste (e-waste), reducing energy and water consumption and promoting actions to address climate change while delivering world-class communications, entertainment and digital solutions to consumers as well as corporate and government clients.
Dennis Chia, Chief Financial Officer of StarHub, added, “As we are driving our business to support the growth and development of new services, we are pleased to underpin our commitment in our sustainability strategy by taking up our very first sustainability-linked loan with CIMB. We look forward to more opportunities to participate in sustainability-linked financing to proactively drive a sustainable business and enhance the performance of the company.”
To incentivise environmental transparency and performance, CIMB will grant a rebate against the loan interest based on StarHub’s performance in its annual CDP Climate Change Scores from FY2021 to FY2023. StarHub will be eligible for interest savings each year if it is able to achieve the pre-agreed annual targets on CDP Climate Change Scores. CDP, formerly known as the Carbon Disclosure Project, is a leading global benchmark on the management of climate-related impacts, to assess responders’ progress towards environmental stewardship.
“We are cognisant of the risks and opportunities associated with climate change, as well as our multifaceted role as a financial institution in working with stakeholders to advance sustainability principles. This SLL is a testament to CIMB’s commitment to help clients on their sustainability journeys, in this case by incorporating environmental and social considerations into financing terms to drive sustainable corporate behaviour. Our aim is to encourage and enable positive developments such as climate risk mitigation and adaptation, as well as financial inclusion. We hope to be able to announce more SLLs and sustainability-linked developments with like-minded clients like StarHub in the near future,” Gurdip added.