Apparel giant VF Corp has closed its inaugural EUR500m (US$551.5m) green bond offering, the proceeds of which will be used to fund progress on its environmental and social responsibility commitments. 

The company, whose brands include Vans, The North Face and Timberland, claims this is the first green bond issued in the apparel and footwear industry.

“At VF, we believe that delivering on our commitments to environmental and social responsibility is equally important as meeting our financial commitments to shareholders,” says CEO Steve Rendle. “The overwhelming interest in our green bond serves as an endorsement from the business community for our purpose-led agenda and focus on connecting business success with actions that improve lives and our planet.”

The transaction, which was announced earlier this month, garnered demand from a diverse group of investors around the world, according to VF.

The proceeds will support programmes within the company’s Made for Change Sustainability & Responsibility strategy and drive progress towards its recently announced science-based targets (SBTs) and sustainable materials vision.

VF’s green bond framework defines funding eligibility criteria in three areas:

  • Sustainable products and materials, such as those that support VF’s commitment to source 100% of its top nine materials from regenerative, recyclable or renewable sources by 2030;
  • Sustainable operations and supply chain, such as renewable energy installations, and zero waste distribution centres;
  • Natural carbon sinks, including reforestation conservation projects, and investments in regenerative agriculture practices.