ICO receives "Best Social Bond of the Year" award from Global Capital magazine
The award recognises the innovation of ICO's social bonds launched in the international sustainable bond markets.
This year's €500 million issue has cemented ICO's reputation a social bond issuer.
ICO's social bonds are designed to create or maintain jobs in SMEs in Spanish regions where income per capita is below the national average.
Global Capital, an international magazine specialising in financial markets analysis, has awarded ICO its "Best Social Bond of the Year2 award in recognition of this year's €500 million bond issue. The awards were presented on 7 September at an international conference on sustainable bonds in Amsterdam.
Following the excellent take up of its inaugural social bond issue in 2015, this year ICO launched a second issue totalling €500 million. There was strong demand for both issues from socially-responsible investors, easily exceeding expectations in both cases.
ICO will use the funds raised by these issues to finance activities with a positive social impact, creating and maintaining jobs in SMEs in regions where GDP per capita is below the Spanish average.
ICO guarantees that the funds raised from these issues are used to finance companies that meet the eligibility criteria, which is verified by a specialist independent rating agency.
ICO has published a report on the impact of its initial social bond issue in 2015. The funds raised were used to finance 23,254 SMEs through ICO's facilities. Internal estimates show that the funds from this bond issue have maintained more than 150,000 jobs and created more than 6,600 new positions.
These issues have enabled ICO to strengthen its leadership in international capital markets, particularly markets for social bonds, expanding its investor base, improving financing for Spanish companies and helping to create jobs.
The Global Capital awards are based on an in-depth survey of banks, investors, insurance companies, issuers and other financial intermediaries. In particular, the awards recognise issuers that have shown they are innovative, successful and capable of identifying new market niches.