VF is accelerating sustainability. The US fashion retail group, owner of The North Face, Timberland, among others, has closed a green bond issue for half a billion dollars. The objective of this second issue has been to support its development strategy in sustainability.
Building on the success of its first green bond in 2020, this new green bond offering is another example of VF’s strong commitment to projects that support the betterment of people and the planet, according to VF's vice president of global sustainability, Jeannie Renné-Malone, in a statement.
The capital raised will be used to fund the areas of sustainable products and materials; sustainable operations and supply chains, such as renewable energy facilities and waste-free distribution centers; as well as reforestation conservation projects and investments in regenerative agriculture practices.
VF Will Use the Debt to Develop a New Initiative
In addition, the board has stated that the overwhelming interest in this issuance serves as an endorsement from the investment community for our sustainability agenda. VF is not the first company in the industry to link its financing to sustainability. Prada, Adidas, and Chanel are other groups that have signed loans linked to the fulfillment of their eco targets.
Adidas issued €500 million worth of bonds in 2020 with a maturity of eight years that will be listed on the Luxembourg stock exchange. With this, Adidas will finance purchases of recycled materials, make investments in renewable energy and change the power supply of its offices to make them energy efficient.
Chanel also issued green bonds in 2020 worth 600 million euros, which will be listed on the Luxembourg stock exchange. The issues will allow the group to diversify its sources of financing and invest in companies focused on the development of sustainable materials and incentivize suppliers in the field of sustainability.
Prada signed a €90 million, five-year loan with UniCredit Group in 2021. The company plans to accelerate the regeneration and reconversion of waste derived from production processes, as well as to increase the proportion of self-produced energy use by 2025.
VF Corporation Announces its New Ethical Strategy
The company, whose brand portfolio includes Timberland, Vans, The North Face, Wrangler, Lee and Kipling Europe, among others, gives priority in its sustainability strategy to e-commerce and circular business models, such as rental business strategies and products that are designed to have a second life, due to their lower environmental impact, compared to the traditional linear system, in which products have a limited useful life, after which they are discarded.
VF Corporation includes in its plan the group's commitment to reduce its environmental footprint by 50% by 2030, through the implementation of measures throughout its supply chain and in the different stages of product manufacturing. Decarbonization throughout the supply chain in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and reduce the impact of the materials used in manufacturing are some of these measures.
The North American group, founded in 1899 and based in North Carolina, also states its intention to improve the working conditions of its workers and members of the local communities in which its factories are located by 2025.