Hong Kong-based Baring PE Asia secures $3.2b ESG loan facility

Hong Kong-based alternative investment firm Baring Private Equity Asia (BPEA) has secured a sustainability-linked loan worth up to $3.2 billion for environmental, social and governance (ESG) investments across Asia, according to a statement.

The initiative is the first and largest to be launched in Asia by a private equity firm, with initial commitments of approximately $1.5 billion, BPEA said.

The facility will be subject to sustainability performance targets (SPTs) with a focus primarily on gender diversity and climate change.

The Hong Kong-based investment firm added that it will reduce the interest rate of the loan if it can achieve the SPTs. Proceeds will be used to support BPEA’s private equity investment platform.

BPEA said it will require portfolio companies to build “a stronger and more supportive environment for female talent to thrive.” Meanwhile, to tackle climate change, BPEA’s portfolio companies will improve greenhouse gas emissions reporting, set climate targets, and ultimately drive emissions reduction.

The establishment of the loan facility will see BPEA strengthen its investment process by integrating enhanced ESG risk and opportunity assessments to inform ESG action plans for each portfolio company.

“We recognize the correlation between strong, sustainable business practices and value creation. The facility’s ambitious targets incentivise our firm and our investee companies to aspire to higher standards while also encouraging long-term thinking on key topics like climate change to drive positive change for the communities in which we operate,” said Jean Eric Salata, CEO and founding partner of BPEA.

The private equity firm is currently in the market to raise $8.5 billion for its eighth buyout fund. The fund will allocate up to 10% of its capital to growth-stage investments, alongside traditional buyouts.

Its seven first funds have generated a combined net return of 1.64 times invested capital, a net IRR of 14.9%, and a net DPI of 0.64 times invested capital as of March 31, 2021, according to the Employees Retirement System of Rhode Island, which is planning to commit up to $50 million to the eighth fund.

Baring Asia Private Equity Fund VIII has also received commitments from the Illinois Municipal Retirement Fund, the Teacher Retirement System of Texas, and Louisiana State Employees’ Retirement System.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.

Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.