Retirement village operator Summerset Group’s $NZ700 million syndicated sustainability linked loan – the largest in the New Zealand loan market and first in the sector – has set the benchmark for sustainability standards within the aged-care industry. ANZ was sole sustainability coordinator and arranger.
The company has committed to three key sustainability performance targets - the roll out of memory-care suites and continuation of dementia-friendly accreditation, an emissions reduction target, and a reduction in construction waste to landfill. The targets are underpinned by Summerset’s corporate strategy around wellbeing, innovation and sustainability.
An example of its wellbeing and innovation strategy, the company developed a product line called ‘memory-care suites’ targeted at people living with dementia who need some level of support but not full-time care due to the advanced stages of the disease. The company has also prioritised the continuing training of its carers to maintain standards.
“The SLL format allows us to work with borrowers to devise meaningful and ambitious performance targets that reflects the company’s broader strategy,” Dean Spicer, ANZ’s Head of Sustainable Finance – New Zealand said.
The KPIs selected by Summerset reflect their sustainability goals to “bring increased wellbeing to their customers and staff, by harnessing the power of innovation and weaving sustainability into their work,” Spicer said.
The structure of the industry also naturally lends itself to the multiple product formats within sustainable finance.
“The operators of residential care accommodations are often the property owners providing for social needs which lends itself to use-of-proceed type products,” Spicer said.