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Great Places sells £75m bonds at 140bps by tapping existing issue

Great Places Housing Group has tapped its existing bond for £145m, including £70m retained for later sale.

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The Manchester association sold £75m of bonds to six investors at a spread of 140 basis points over gilts and all-in cost of 3.34 per cent. It has retained £70m for later sale.

Great Places, which has more than 19,000 homes across the North West and South Yorkshire, plans to use the money to fund its development programme over the coming months.


Phil Elvy, executive director of finance, said: “I am really delighted with this outcome – we have achieved an extremely competitive price, on a par with some much larger RPs, demonstrating that we are a financially strong organisation that is an attractive proposition to the market.”

The 4.75% 2042 bond was issued in 2012. The tap takes the total outstanding amount of bond to £275m and “into the relevant bond index”, according to the HA’s treasury adviser Link Asset Services. The bookrunner on the transaction was Santander.


David Whelan, managing director of Link Asset Services, said the issue was an ‘excellent result’.


The issue follows an announcement by Moody’s last week that it had given Great Places an A3 rating. Moody’s said Great Places’ A3 rating reflects the association’s "ample liquidity and improved operating performance, in addition to the strong regulatory framework governing English housing associations".


The HA is also rated A+ by Fitch.


Devonshires and Allen & Overy were legal advisers to the issuer and investors respectively. Prudential is security trustee.

Mr Elvy added: “I am pleased that the excellent relationships we have maintained with a range of investors since our debut issue in 2012 has continued.


“We can now focus on investing the new funding in the development of more homes to help address the country’s housing crisis and create vibrant, sustainable communities.”


The treasury team at Link Asset Services were at Capita until last year, when the asset services division was sold to Link.

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