COLUMBUS, Ga., March 8, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Aflac Incorporated announced today that it has closed its first sustainability bond, further reinforcing the company's longstanding commitment to uphold the core values of our "people-first" business approach that balances purpose and profit. The company's core values include reinforcing and operating with the utmost respect for our environment and the communities we serve.
The company issued $400 million principal amount of 1.125% senior notes due 2026.
The company intends to allocate an amount at least equivalent to the net proceeds from the offering exclusively to existing or future investments in, or financing of, projects which provide environmental or social benefits, meeting eligibility criteria under the Aflac Incorporated Sustainability Framework within eight categories: renewable energy, energy efficiency, green buildings, clean transportation, sustainable water management, pollution prevention and control; socio-economic advancement and empowerment; and communities. These categories also align with and incorporate the priorities set forth in the Sustainable Development Goals adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015.
Integrating ESG factors into Aflac Incorporated's business has been a critical part of the company's operations for more than 30 years and extends to Global Investments' core investment philosophy. The company believes this approach leads to better decisions with respect to the sustainability of an investment and its risk and return profile, while helping to make a positive financial and social impact on all of Aflac's stakeholders.
Commenting on the issuance, Aflac Incorporated President and Chief Operating Officer Frederick J. Crawford said: "This inaugural offering reinforces our commitment to advancing the priorities we have lived and breathed for decades as a compassionate company and good corporate citizen. Being true to what our company stands for is just as important as the products and services we provide. This approach creates a positive cycle that starts with the building of enterprise value, then supporting a further commitment of resources toward our sustainability efforts, perpetuating our ability to make a difference. Our work to date has paved the way for what we believe is helping to make a direct and measurable positive impact on society and the environment. As we strive to deliver value to the people who depend upon us, including policyholders, shareholders, bondholders, employees and the communities in which we operate, we will continue to identify ways to advance the approach that is known as The Aflac Way."
Sustainalytics, a leading global independent provider of ESG and corporate governance research and ratings, has reviewed and verified that Aflac Incorporated's Sustainability Bond Framework aligns with the Sustainability Bond Guidelines 2018, Green Bond Principles 2018, and Social Bond Principles 2020, as published by the International Capital Market Association. Aflac Incorporated's Sustainable Bond Framework may be found at investors.aflac.com under "Resources".
Investors may learn more about Aflac Incorporated at investors.aflac.com. For more information about Aflac Incorporated's sustainability and ESG efforts, please visit esg.aflac.com.
ABOUT AFLAC INCORPORATED Aflac Incorporated (NYSE: AFL) is a Fortune 500 company, helping provide protection to more than 50 million people through its subsidiaries in Japan and the U.S., where it is a leading supplemental insurer by paying cash fast when policyholders get sick or injured. For more than six decades, insurance policies of Aflac Incorporated's subsidiaries have given policyholders the opportunity to focus on recovery, not financial stress. Aflac Life Insurance Japan is the leading provider of medical and cancer insurance in Japan, where it insures 1 in 4 households. Fortune magazine recognized Aflac as one of the 100 Best Companies to Work for in America for 20 consecutive years. For 15 consecutive years, Aflac has been included on Ethisphere's list of the World's Most Ethical Companies. In 2021, Fortune included Aflac Incorporated on its list of World's Most Admired Companies for the 20th time, and Bloomberg added Aflac Incorporated to its Gender-Equality Index for the second time, which tracks the financial performance of public companies committed to supporting gender equality through policy development, representation and transparency. To learn how to get help with expenses health insurance doesn't cover, get to know us at aflac.com.
FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 provides a "safe harbor" to encourage companies to provide prospective information, so long as those informational statements are identified as forward-looking and are accompanied by meaningful cautionary statements identifying important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those included in the forward-looking statements. The company desires to take advantage of these provisions. This document contains cautionary statements identifying important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected herein, and in any other statements made by company officials in communications with the financial community and contained in documents filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Forward-looking statements are not based on historical information and relate to future operations, strategies, financial results or other developments. Furthermore, forward-looking information is subject to numerous assumptions, risks and uncertainties. In particular, statements containing words such as "expect," "anticipate," "believe," "goal," "objective," "may," "should," "estimate," "intends," "projects," "will," "assumes," "potential," "target," "outlook" or similar words as well as specific projections of future results, generally qualify as forward-looking. Aflac undertakes no obligation to update such forward-looking statements.
The company cautions readers that the following factors, in addition to other factors mentioned from time to time, could cause actual results to differ materially from those contemplated by the forward-looking statements:
• difficult conditions in global capital markets and the economy, including those caused by COVID-19
• subsidiaries' ability to pay dividends to the Parent Company
• defaults and credit downgrades of investments
• inherent limitations to risk management policies and procedures
• exposure to significant interest rate risk
• concentration of the Company's investments in any particular single-issuer or sector
• concentration of business in Japan
• events related to the Japan Post investigation and other matters
• limited availability of acceptable yen- denominated investments
• tax rates applicable to the Company may change
• foreign currency fluctuations in the yen/dollar exchange rate
• failure to comply with restrictions on policyholder privacy and information security
• differing judgments applied to investment valuations
• extensive regulation and changes in law or regulation by governmental authorities
• significant valuation judgments in determination of expected credit losses recorded on the Company's investments
• competitive environment and ability to anticipate and respond to market trends
• decreases in the Company's financial strength or debt ratings
• catastrophic events including, but not necessarily limited to, epidemics, pandemics (such as the coronavirus COVID-19), tornadoes, hurricanes, earthquakes, tsunamis, war or other military action, terrorism or other acts of violence, and damage incidental to such events
• decline in creditworthiness of other financial institutions
• ability to protect the Aflac brand and the Company's reputation
• the effects of COVID-19, and any resulting economic effects and government interventions, on the Company's business and financial results
• ability to effectively manage key executive succession
• ability to attract and retain qualified sales associates, brokers, employees, and distribution partners
• changes in accounting standards
• deviations in actual experience from pricing and reserving assumptions
• level and outcome of litigation
• ability to continue to develop and implement improvements in information technology systems
• allegations or determinations of worker misclassification in the United States
• interruption in telecommunication, information technology and other operational systems, or a failure to maintain the security, confidentiality or privacy of sensitive data residing on such systems
Analyst and investor contact - David A. Young, 706.596.3264 or 800.235.2667 or [email protected]