ESB today (12th November) successfully priced a €500m bond with a 7 year maturity and a coupon of 4.375%. The bonds are being bought mainly by European institutional investors and the total amount of orders received was over EUR 6 billion.
This bond follows ESB's successful €600m 5 year issuance in September 2012. The longer tenor and lower yield of today's deal reflects improving market sentiment towards ESB and Irish bonds generally.
This bond issue will support ESB in funding its ongoing capital investment programme in Ireland which includes investments in the electricity networks and renewable generation. The proceeds from the bond issue will also be used to refinance some of ESB’s existing debt. In that context it supports ESB’s liquidity position and demonstrates its continued ability to attract international capital for infrastructure investment in Ireland.
ESB continues to grow its business through new investment while also reducing its cost base. It has a target of achieving €280m in annual cost reductions between 2010 and 2015, which equates to an overall reduction of 25% in costs excluding fuel. This is being achieved through an integrated programme that includes payroll cost reductions and reductions in staff numbers.