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29 May 2024
press release

Austria: Schoenherr advises bookrunners on successful issuance of EUR 500m green bonds by VERBUND

Schoenherr advised Barclays and J.P. Morgan in their capacities as joint ESG structuring agents and joint bookrunners, as well as BofA Securities, Raiffeisen Bank International and Santander Corporate & Investment Banking as joint bookrunners, on the Austrian law aspects of the successful issuance of EUR 500 million 3.250 per cent. Green Bonds due 2031 by VERBUND AG ("VERBUND").

VERBUND issued the green bonds under German law (ISIN: XS2821745374) in May 2024. An amount equal to the net proceeds from the issuance will be used to wholly or partially finance or refinance certain eligible green projects in line with the VERBUND Green Financing Framework. VERBUND intends to use approximately 90 % of the proceeds to finance the construction of the Austrian Power Grid Salzburg line and the other 10 % to finance its Riverscape Lower Inn and Blue Belt Danube-Inn projects. These biodiversity projects are part of VERBUND's programme to improve the ecology and biodiversity around hydroelectric power plants in Austria and Bavaria.

The notes were successfully placed among institutional investors, have a denomination of EUR 100,000 each and are listed on the regulated market of the Luxembourg Stock Exchange as well as on the Official Market of the Vienna Stock Exchange. The notes are rated "A+" by S&P and "A3" by Moody's.

"The issuance of the green bonds under the VERBUND Green Financing Framework was a highly successful transaction," said Schoenherr partner and co-head of the firm's capital markets practice Christoph Moser. "We are very pleased that the bookrunners relied on our expertise in this innovative green issuance."

"Green issuances have become an important financing tool," added attorney at law Angelika Fischer, who co-led the Schoenherr team. "An issuer like VERBUND is predestined for the further development of the Austrian market standard."

VERBUND is Austria's leading electricity company and one of the largest producers of hydroelectricity in Europe. Close to 100 % of VERBUND's electricity generation comes from climate-friendly, renewable hydropower.

In addition to Christoph Moser (partner) and Angelika Fischer (attorney at law), the Schoenherr team consisted of Daniel Gritsch (associate) and Clemens Stockhammer.

Linklaters LLP, Frankfurt am Main (partner Alexander Schlee and counsel Martin Rojahn) acted as international counsel to the Joint ESG Structuring Agents and Joint Bookrunners. Binder Grösswang (partners Florian Kohl, Emanuel Welten, Stefan Frank and counsel Philipp Tagwerker) advised the issuer on Austrian law aspects of the transaction. White & Case LLP, Frankfurt am Main (partner Karsten Wöckener, local partner Peter Becker and associate Darleen Stoeckl) acted as international counsel to VERBUND.

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