CAMGSM PLC (Cellcard), Cambodia’s homegrown telecommunications company, has made history by being the first to issue a USD $20 million sustainability bond on the Cambodia Securities Exchange (CSX) on November 24, 2023.
This milestone follows CAMGSM PLC’s listing on the CSX earlier on June 27, 2023, making it the first and only telecommunications company to be listed.
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According to a press release issued by CAMGSM PLC, the company aims to establish a new standard of sustainability within the Cambodian business community, further asserting that the USD $20 million sustainability bond showcases its dedication to environmental and social responsibility.
During the bond issuance ceremony on the morning of November 24, 2023, Christopher Donald Tiffin, Group Chief Operating Officer of Royal Group, stated, “The CAMGSM sustainability bond will support projects aimed at mitigating climate change risks through investments in renewable energy and providing connectivity to underserved communities.”
CAMGSM PLC has affirmed that the USD $20 million bond will be strategically allocated to enhance network and infrastructure capabilities, as well as invest in environmentally friendly products and initiatives that benefit those in need. The sustainability bond has a tenor of 10 years and sets a new benchmark for corporate bond issuance in Cambodia.
Seng Chanthoeun, CEO of Royal Group Securities, the sole underwriter and financial advisor for this transaction, remarked, “Cellcard’s sustainability bond will generate significant benefits for our market and society. By being the first-ever sustainability bond listed, we are optimistic that this milestone will pave the way for more issuances of Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) bonds in the near future.”
Chanthoeun added that the bond proceeds will finance projects that bring social and environmental benefits to the country.
“This is a testament to our commitment to driving the Cambodian securities market towards a more sustainable future,” he emphasised.
Nishant Kumar, Managing Director of GuarantCo Ltd., also delivered a speech during the issuance ceremony touting CAMGSM’s sustainability bond as “the first of its kind in Cambodia”, while also mentioning that this is GuarantCo’s third transaction in the Kingdom.
“We are proud to have supported Cellcard in expanding its cellular network in Cambodia,” he said.
Kumar added that GuarantCo, part of the Private Infrastructure Development Group, is committed to developing Cambodia’s capital market and is pleased to collaborate with policymakers and regulatory bodies to introduce innovative and groundbreaking issuances in the country.
Credit bond rating business ‘Moody’s’ served as the Sole Placement Agent (SPO) for the bond, while investors ‘Manulife’ and ‘Prudential’ fully subscribed to the bond, backed by a 100 per cent guarantee from GuarantCo.
May Lin, Chief Financial Officer of Manulife Cambodia, expressed her satisfaction in being the main investor in CAMGSM’s bonds. She said Manulife Cambodia is committed to working with key market participants to develop the Cambodian capital market, which she believes is crucial for the success of the life insurance industry. Lin further affirmed Manulife’s full support for Cellcard’s mission to deliver innovative and impactful digital solutions for the Cambodian people.
CAMGSM PLC stressed in its press release that its journey towards a sustainable economy does not end here. The company stated that it remains dedicated to making a positive impact on the environment and society, serving the underserved, and contributing to the growth of sustainable businesses in Cambodia.
The issuance of the first sustainability bond in Cambodia marks a significant step towards fostering greater sustainability and responsible investment practices in the region, laying the foundation for a brighter and more sustainable future, according to the bond Guarantor representative.
CAMGSM affirms that the successful listing of its internationally certified Sustainability Bond serves as a testament to its collaborative efforts and commitment to driving sustainable finance in Cambodia.
Parts of this article were adapted from a supplied press release.
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