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Revolving bank facility

 

The Group signed a £450 million ESG-linked unsecured revolving credit facility (“RCF”) at a headline margin of 90 basis points over LIBOR (transitioned to SONIA as of December 2021)  with a group of five existing relationship banks on 31 January 2020. The facility had an initial five-year term, with £400m now  extended to 31 January 2027.

This innovative facility, the first to be issued by a UK REIT, incorporates three ESG-linked KPIs which align with our ambitious sustainability strategy.

The facility is fully available for general corporate purposes and includes our standard unsecured financial covenants (see below):

  • The ratio of Consolidated Net Borrowings to Consolidated Shareholders’ Funds must not exceed 1.25:1
  • The ratio of Unencumbered Asset Value to Consolidated Unsecured Borrowings must not be less than 1.66:1
  • The ratio of Consolidated Profits Before Interest and Tax to Consolidated Net Interest must not be less than 1.35:1

The headline margin payable on the facility depends on a ratchet mechanism based on the ratio of Consolidated Net Borrowings to Consolidated Shareholders’ Funds. The margin ratchet is 90 - 150 basis points (over SONIA).

The participating banks are Santander, NatWest, Wells Fargo, Lloyds Bank plc and Bank of China. Santander acted as the Sustainability Co-ordinator.

Our ESG linked KPI’s include annual pre-agreed targets and are based on:

  • Reducing our portfolio energy intensity;
  • Reducing the embodied carbon of our new build developments and major refurbishments; and
  • Increasing the biodiversity net gain across our portfolio.

These targets further incentivise the Group to accelerate the decarbonisation of our business and support continued behavioural change within the Group and across our supply chain.

We measure performance against each KPI annually. A margin decrease or increase of up to 2.5 basis points will be applied to the headline margin on the basis of this performance. All margin adjustments are given by GPE to registered charities focused on environmental initiatives.

The first KPI performance measurement date was 31 March 2021, where we exceeded all three of our KPI’s. For 31 March 2022 performance, please see table below:

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