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Triodos Bank partners with Golden Lane Housing and Mencap to launch £10m charity bond

UK’s largest ever unlisted charity bond will buy houses for people with a learning disability

15-02-2013 | Golden Lane Housing (GLH), the housing arm of Mencap, has launched a £10 million charity bond which will raise money to buy homes for people with a learning disability. Based on soft-market testing*, the GLH Bond will be the UK’s largest ever charity bond issue of its kind.

Investors in the bond, which has a minimum investment level of £2,000 per investor, will receive a fixed gross yield of 4% per annum for the five year fixed term.

Working in partnership with Triodos Bank, the UK’s leading sustainable bank, the charity is aiming to raise £10 million from a wide range of social investors for this bond before the closing date of 30 April 2013.

GLH views this bond issue as the first step in raising up to £30 million over the next few years, which will mean that in total, investors will give 250 people with a learning disability the chance to live independently in specially adapted homes.

Just 1 in 3 people with a learning disability currently lives independently, and many struggle to compete on the open market, making it virtually impossible to find housing in areas where there is no suitable social housing available.

Recent Mencap research found that 8 in 10 councils in England and Wales report a housing shortage for adults with a learning disability in their areas, with nearly 7 in 10 (67%) stating this has worsened in the last 12 months.

GLH and Mencap work with local authorities and NHS commissioners to find funding for suitable properties for people with a learning disability and then develop packages of support so that they are able to live independently.

Jan Tregelles, Acting Chief Executive of Mencap said: "There is a severe housing shortage for people with a learning disability. Following the abuse scandal at Winterbourne View, demand for housing is set to grow further because the Government has committed to return many of the 3,000 people currently in long stay hospitals to their local communities.

"Investors in this bond have the chance to transform the lives of people with a learning disability by helping them to live the lives they choose in quality permanent homes."

Alastair Graham, Director of Golden Lane Housing said: "In difficult times, we need creative and ambitious solutions. Unprecedented cuts to local authority budgets mean charities must widen their sources of funding. We are confident that this bond will raise the capital we need to help us support more people than ever, and in turn create a new model for social investment within the charity and housing sectors."

Dan Hird, Head of Corporate Finance at Triodos Bank, commented: "We’re very pleased to support our long standing client Golden Lane Housing in the next phase of its growth by raising up to £10 million of fresh capital through this sizeable charity bond issue. Triodos Bank also advised Golden Lane on its first ever bond issue back in 2003, which raised £1.8 million and helped set the charity on its growth path."

Justin Cooper, CEO of Capita Shareholder Services added: “Bonds of this kind are a win-win for charities and socially minded investors. Not only are they an excellent way for charities to finance their projects, but investors can also see their funds being used directly as those projects come to fruition. Investors also enjoy the growing appeal of investments that remove large banks from the equation - they are increasingly attracted to alternatives that see their money cutting out the middle man and being used for a good cause. GLH’s first bond performed very well and we expect this one to be equally attractive to investors. Charities should look at this example and consider how these bonds can add a significant 'string' to their fund raising 'bow'.”

Notes to editors

* Soft testing is used in the field of business and marketing. A target group (in this case potential investors) is being used to gauge the viability of a product or service in the mass market prior to a wide scale roll-out.

For general enquiries, please contact Huw Thomas on 0117 980 9593 or investments@triodos.co.uk

For further information or to arrange interviews, please contact Claire Monger at Mencap on 020 7696 5414 or claire.monger@mencap.org.uk


Lisa Stanley or William Ferguson at Triodos Bank on 0117 980 9721 / 0117 980 9770 or lisa.stanley@triodos.co.uk / William.ferguson@triodos.co.uk

Important notice.

This article does not constitute an offer or invitation to subscribe for bonds. Golden Lane Housing Limited published an Investment Memorandum in February 2013 - applications to subscribe for the bond can only be made on the application form available with the Investment Memorandum or online at www.glh.org.uk/bond-offer . Applications can only be made on the basis of, and subject to, the information contained in the Investment Memorandum.

Golden Lane Housing Limited is a private company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales with registered office at 123 Golden Lane, London EC1Y 0RT (registered number 3597323). Registered with the Charity Commission with registered charity number 1071097.

This article has been approved by Triodos Bank NV (incorporated under the laws of the Netherlands with limited liability, registered in England and Wales BR3012). Authorised by the Dutch Central Bank (DNB) and regulated by the Financial Services Authority (FSA) for the conduct of UK business.

The Golden Lane Housing Ltd bond issue is sponsored by Triodos Bank NV (Registered office: Triodos Bank, Deanery Road, Bristol BS1 5AS).

About Golden Lane Housing

Golden Lane Housing is a national housing charity that provides supported living housing for people with a learning disability. Since being established by Mencap in 1998, Golden Lane Housing has housed over 1,100 people and invested over £70 million in housing. Golden Lane Housing works throughout England and Wales.

The GLH Bond

The Golden Lane Housing Bond aims to raise up to £10 million of fresh capital from social investors and it will be used to acquire freehold properties to house people with moderate to severe learning disabilities. The Bond will be issued directly by GLH, unsecured and is for a 5 year term offering investors a fixed yield of 4% p.a. The minimum investment in the Bond is £2,000 per investor. The Bonds can be traded on a matched bargain basis through Ethex.

About Mencap

There are 1.5 million people with a learning disability in the UK. Mencap works to support people with a learning disability and their families and carers by fighting to change laws and improve services and access to education, employment and leisure facilities. Mencap supports thousands of people with a learning disability to live their lives the way they want.


About Triodos Bank UK Corporate Finance

Triodos Bank NV is one of the world’s leading sustainable banks. Its advisory arm, Triodos Corporate Finance, works exclusively with sustainable businesses and has a long track record of advising businesses on raising capital through private placements and retail offers. Over the past two years, Triodos Bank’s UK Corporate Finance arm has raised over £35 million for businesses within the sustainability sector with investments from institutions, charitable foundations, private high net worth individuals and retail investors.

What is a learning disability?

A learning disability is a reduced intellectual ability and difficulty with everyday activities – for example household tasks, socialising or managing money – which affects someone for their whole life.

People with a learning disability tend to take longer to learn and may need support to develop new skills, understand complex information and interact with other people. The level of support someone needs depends on individual factors, including the severity of their learning disability.

Learning disability is NOT a mental illness. The term learning difficulty is often incorrectly used interchangeably with learning disability.

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