This is the second green funding package in a few months for TPER spa (Trasporto Passeggeri Emilia-Romagna), the mobility group that manages, among other things, local public transport by road in the provinces of Bologna, Ferrara, Modena, and Ravenna, which has now secured, on the one hand, a €65 million credit line, made available by Intesa Sanpaolo, Cassa Depositi e Prestiti (CDP) and BPER Banca, and, on the other, a €15 million bilateral loan assisted by SACE’s 80% Green Guarantee, provided by Intesa Sanpaolo.
The announcement comes after TPER secured a €12 million loan last July, also backed by SACE’s 80% Green Guarantee, provided by Banco BPM. That deal was aimed at the purchase of two electric-powered trains that will replace diesel-powered vehicles currently in use on the regional network, by the Trenitalia-TPER subsidiary.
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Details of the green funding
Both two new loans feature a pricing mechanism linked to the achievement of specific ESG (Environmental, Social, Governance) objectives. In fact, the proceeds of the transactions will support investments related to the renewal of transport vehicles focusing in particular on hydrogen and electric power, and will be part of TPER’s 2023-2026 growth program, which envisages total investments of more than €430 million and the replacement of 582 new buses, equal to about 49 percent of the existing fleet.
For Intesa Sanpaolo, the transaction was structured by the IMI Corporate & Investment Banking Division, which acted as Lead Arranger, Mandated Lead Arranger, Agent Bank, and Sustainability Coordinator, confirming the bank’s commitment to supporting the energy transition.
For CDP, which acted as Mandated Lead Arranger, the initiative, structured by the Infrastructure Area, confirms the Institution’s role as a financier of the country’s infrastructure and aims to encourage the development of sustainable mobility by contributing to the protection of the environment and territories.
TPER is controlled 46.1 percent by the Emilia-Romagna Region, 30.1 percent by the Municipality of Bologna, 18.8 percent by the Metropolitan City of Bologna, and 3.1 percent by the Azienda consorziale trasporti and various provinces in the region. The group is one of the leading passenger transport operators in Italy, as well as the largest company in Emilia-Romagna in terms of numbers and service volumes in the public passenger transport sector.
The company’s areas of activity cover different segments of the transportation sector, from automobile to trolleybus, to passenger rail. TPER manages, in particular, tpl by road in the provincial basins of Bologna and Ferrara and passenger transport by regional rail, in partnership with Trenitalia.
The group’s other activities, either directly or through subsidiaries, also include the management of a major freight yard in Emilia-Romagna, railway maintenance, and the management of a 100% electric car-sharing service (called corrente), with cars and scooters, in strong synergy with tpl, which has about 80 thousand members.
In 2021, TPER had a turnover of €218.2 million, EBITDA was negative €25.6 million, net financial debt amounted to €45.9 million, and equity equaled €171.9 million. Speaking of debt, recall that TPER in 2018 had issued a €95 million unsecured bond, which is listed on Euronext Dublin. The bond matures in 2024 and has an amortizing structure and pays a coupon of 1.85 percent.
Commenting on the new green funding, Giuseppina Gualtieri, president, and chief executive officer of TPER, said, “We continue to invest to further strengthen our role as an active player in an “ecosystem of integrated and intermodal mobility” in the territory; a role that is not only carried out with buses and trains, but also with the development of digital platforms and new technologies for mobility that is ever closer to people’s needs, such as the Roger app and contactless payment systems, and through the management of Corrente electric vehicle sharing services: not only cars, but recently also scooters.”
“The trust and support of the credit world allows us to make strategic investments that will lead us already in the short term to further strengthen our concrete commitment to an increasingly integrated and strategic mobility for the territory in which we operate.”
Michele Sorrentino, head of Italian Network at Intesa Sanpaolo’s IMI Corporate & Investment Banking Division, added, “We are happy to be able to support such an important company as TPER and its virtuous development plan. Supporting investments in the public transport sector means contributing to the reduction of polluting emissions and the improvement of the quality of services rendered in the area, both for the benefit of the people who use them in their daily lives and more generally to support tourism.”
“Fostering the transition to green and sustainable mobility in our cities is an issue to which the Intesa Sanpaolo Group is particularly attentive and sensitive, aware that it represents a fundamental prerequisite for the economic growth of the entire country, in line with the objectives of the PNRR.”
“We are particularly proud to have concluded this green funding with the aim of supporting the growth of such a solid company with a strategic role in the social and economic development of the territory,” said in turn Carlo Lamari, head of Infrastructure CDP.
“The investments that will be made thanks to the resources made available will not only contribute to the improvement of air quality, but will also have as indirect effects that of reducing traffic and increasing road safety thanks to greater accessibility of public transport services. As CDP, we believe it is crucial to continue investing in efficient, innovative, and inclusive infrastructure, such as public transport, while increasingly orienting our efforts toward the energy transition.”
And concluded Marco Mandelli, Chief Corporate & Investment Banking Officer of BPER Banca: “Our support to a historical and so relevant entity like TPER goes in a very specific direction. That of concretely supporting companies that want to invest in reducing polluting emissions, so that they can offer an increasingly punctual and quality service. BPER Bank has long been on the side of national companies that want to improve their energy performance and thus increase productivity with a focus on green policies. Our division, in this sense, is constantly working to offer increasingly satisfactory services.”
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First published in Be Beez. A third-party contributor translated and adapted the article from the original. In case of discrepancy, the original will prevail.
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