BlueHub Loan Fund, an affiliate of BlueHub Capital, a $1 billion+ national nonprofit community finance organization, announced today that it has completed its first public debt offering, a $75 million Sustainability Bond — $56.25 million in 10-year bonds and $18.75 million in 7-year bonds. The successful offering enables BlueHub Loan Fund to continue its strategy of strong lending to finance high impact projects in low-income communities across the country.
“We have a 35-year track record of bridging the gap between low-income communities and the financial resources they need to thrive. BlueHub Loan Fund has invested over $1.3 billion, and leveraged over $8.5 billion additional investment, to finance projects that enhance community vitality—affordable housing, grocery stores, childcare centers and schools, healthcare facilities and more,” said Elyse Cherry, BlueHub Capital’s CEO. “Our Sustainability Bond is the right next step in our continued growth and reflects an endorsement of our lending model by mainstream capital markets.”
According to BlueHub Loan Fund President Michelle Volpe, “BlueHub Loan Fund’s core goal is to support vital community resources, and to provide patient, flexible capital that isn’t available elsewhere. The proceeds of this bond allow us to offer our borrowers longer-term capital that better matches their financing needs. The end result is stronger organizations and better services for low-income residents.”
BlueHub Loan Fund and its Sustainability Bond are rated A- with a stable outlook—signaling strong credit worthiness—by S&P Global Ratings. S&P cited BlueHub Loan Fund’s financial position, effective portfolio management, and excellent loan health in support of its rating, specifically noting BlueHub Loan Fund’s “lean business model,” and “strong history of loan performance.”
Sustainalytics, a leading research, rating, and analytics firm focused on responsible investment strategies, independently validated BlueHub’s Sustainability Bond. Sustainalytics reviewed the BlueHub Loan Fund Sustainability Bond Framework and concluded that BlueHub’s loans contribute to or advance eight of the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. The firm also determined that BlueHub Loan Fund’s offering aligns with the four core components of the International Capital Markets Association’s 2018 Sustainability Bond Guidelines, which classify bonds used to exclusively finance or refinance projects with environmental and social benefits as Sustainability Bonds.
According to Grace Chionuma, an Executive Director at Morgan Stanley, BlueHub’s underwriting partner for the bond, “The success of BlueHub’s Sustainability Bond is a clear indicator of the appetite for Community Development Financial Institution bonds and of investor confidence in the industry’s financial capabilities and commitment to effective social impact. Morgan Stanley is proud to have worked with BlueHub to match its mission-driven approach with the interests of impact investors.”
“Trillium has partnered with Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) including BlueHub Loan Fund for almost four decades to deliver the triple-bottom-line results that our clients are looking for – driving positive social and environmental outcomes while producing strong financial results,” said Matthew Patsky, CEO of Trillium Asset Management, a Boston-based investment management firm dedicated to sustainable, responsible, and impact (SRI) investing. “We are extraordinarily pleased to witness and support the recent trend of investment-grade CDFIs leveraging the public debt markets to expand their positive impact even further.”
About BlueHub Loan Fund
BlueHub Loan Fund is an affiliate of BlueHub Capital, a national nonprofit community finance organization with a 35-year history of building healthy communities where low-income people live and work. Since 1985, the Loan Fund has invested over $1.3 billion to support low-income communities, creating and preserving over 21,500 units of affordable housing, 13,000 jobs, healthcare services for more than 197,000 patients, and education and daycare for more than 50,000 children. To learn more about BlueHub Capital and the impact of its investments, visit bluehubcapital.org.