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'Sustainable' firms raise record amount of equity in 2021

Stock MarketsJan 18, 2022 06:16AM ET
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© Reuters. The illuminated word "sustainable" is seen outside a shop in Zurich, Switzerland November 21, 2021. REUTERS/Arnd Wiegmann

By Patturaja Murugaboopathy and Simon Jessop

LONDON (Reuters) - Companies in "sustainable" sectors including renewable energy raised a record amount of equity in 2021, Refinitiv Eikon data showed, boosted by surging demand for investments addressing social and environmental problems.

The data showed sustainable companies borrowed $47.6 billion through equity issuance in 2021, topping a record $33.25 billion in 2020.

Equity fundraising by global ESG companies

Refinitiv identifies 30 sectors, including renewable energy equipment and services, electric cars, biodiesel, solar electric utilities and wind systems and equipment as sustainable sectors.

Global ESG companies' equity fundraising- by sector

Across the major regions, U.S. firms raised the lion's share of the equity, at $26.6 billion, while the Asia-Pacific and European firms raised $12.3 billion and $7.9 billion, respectively.

Carmaker Rivian Automotive Inc's $13.7 billion initial public offering topped the list of deals, followed by China Three Gorges Renewables' $3.5 billion and Shoals Technologies Group's $2.2 billion.

Top equity fundraising by sustainable firms in 2021

“The rise we saw in ESG labelled equity in 2021 is expected to continue – as it is for other higher risk ESG labelled asset classes, such as high yield and subordinated debt," said Arthur Krebbers, head of sustainable finance, corporates at NatWest Markets.

"Green equity can be an effective tool for companies to make the necessary early stage investments in new and still unproven environmental technologies. It also signals an ongoing, effectively perpetual, commitment to green investments – i.e. that a company’s business strategy is intertwined with having a positive environmental impact."

'Sustainable' firms raise record amount of equity in 2021

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