Safaricom has announced that it has closed on a Ksh. 15 billion Sustainability Linked Loan (SLL) in a bid to strengthen its Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) agenda.

The loan which can be scaled to KES 20 billion is the largest ESG linked loan facility ever undertaken in East Africa. The funding is provided by a consortium of four banks consisting of Standard Chartered Bank, Stanbic Bank, ABSA Bank and KCB Bank, and will enable Safaricom to access funding based on its progressive achievement of set milestones across key ESG areas.

The investment is also expected to contribute to the growth of Kenya’s sustainable financing market, which remains a key priority for the Government of Kenya as part of its Vision 2030 plans.

Peter Ndegwa, Chief Executive Officer, Safaricom PLC, “In line with our focus to advance our sustainable business agenda, this funding will unlock our ability to create more diversified investments that will support transformative investments in new technologies, systems and services that allow us to comprehensively manage our ESG footprint. This deal is a significant milestone for Safaricom as it aligns our financial strategy with our Sustainability agenda, a reflection of our commitment to transforming lives by partnering for growth.”

The SLL will help Safaricom deepen its focus on strategic sustainable investments as it continues to pursue more initiatives aligned to its sustainable business strategy as part of its ongoing transition to becoming a fully-fledged technology company by 2025. In particular, the company will focus on reducing its emissions to reach Net Zero targets, tracking gender diversity, and monitoring social equality impacts.  The deal also paves the way for further sustainability financing in the region as companies seek to become more accountable for their ESG reporting and financing.

Standard Chartered Kenya acted as the Global Coordinator, Sustainability Coordinator and Mandated Lead Arranger for the deal.  Kenya Commercial Bank acted as Mandated Lead Arranger, while Stanbic Bank Kenya and ABSA Bank Kenya both acted as Arrangers.