Connecticut Green Bank issues another round of Green Liberty Notes

Connecticut Green Bank launched its eighth sale of Green Liberty Notes, seeking up to $350,000 for a state-wide small business energy loan program.

The one-year notes are on sale through October 26 on Green Bank’s online platform, offered through its subsidiary CGB Green Liberty Notes LLC.

They feature a 5.25% interest rate and, with buy-in starting at $100, appealing to retail investors by “lowering the bar” to access, said Bert Hunter, executive vice president and chief investment officer for the Green Bank.

With buy-in starting at $100, the notes are “lowering the bar” to access for retail investors, said Bert Hunter, executive vice president and chief investment officer for the Green Bank.

Bert Hunter

Officials said in a statement they expect the new notes to sell quickly after demand exceeded sale maximums in the last five consecutive issuances.

It is also offering an interest-rate boost to 5.5% for holders of its fourth series of one-year notes that will mature Nov. 2, if they reinvest them in the new offering.

Priority will be given first to investors who reinvest through the reinvestment offer, and then to Connecticut residents who invest $1,050 or less, the Green Bank said.

Interest on the notes is federally taxable.

Interest was so heavy for the most recent offering of the notes this July that the target of the sale was increased from $250,000 to $350,000, the Green Bank said.

The notes are climate-verified by Kestrel and proceeds from the new issuance will go towards New England utility company Eversource’s Small Business Energy Advantage program, which provides zero-interest loans to small businesses in Connecticut to help reduce energy costs through efficiency upgrades.

Connecticut Green Bank, the nation’s first state-level green bank, was established by an act of the state legislature in 2011 and has since raised $2.5 billion for investments geared towards developing the state’s green economy, the bank says.

Previous issuances by Green Bank, including two issuances of Liberty Green Bonds, have gone on to fund several other like-minded initiatives in the state.

With buy-in set at $1,000, its climate-bond-certified Green Liberty Bonds are also targeted toward the general public, featuring a marketing program that echoed the Series E war bonds sold to Americans during World War II.

Green Bank last sold $24.8 million of the bonds in 2021 to finance a state-supported solar energy credit program.

Demand outstripped supply four-to-one for the issuance, officials said at the time, and the deal fetched an A long-term rating with a stable outlook from S&P Global Ratings.

Green Bank also sold $16.8 million of Liberty Green Bonds in 2020 to support the same program in a deal that won a Bond Buyer award for best innovative finance transaction.

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