Prêt à impact- the Social and Environmental Impact Loan


Prêt à impact- the Social and Environmental Impact Loan

Mismatches Financing
Financing Financial actors Sustainable development financing Public-private collaboration

Main objectives of the project

Caisse d'Epargne has introduced the Social and Environmental Impact Loan (Prêt à impact) to bolster the engagement of its real estate and social housing clientele in social and environmental causes. In this initiative, the interest rates of each loan will be linked to the non-financial social or environmental performance of the borrowers, with the potential bonus being directed towards supporting charitable associations.


  • 2020: En proceso


  • Caisse d'Epargne


Continent: Europe
City: Paris
Country/Region: France, Paris


Caisse d'Epargne, a longstanding private bank in France renowned for its investments in social housing and public sector ventures, aimed to incentivize its clients to adopt more ambitious social and environmental standards in their social housing endeavors. Drawing on these principles of the institution, the initiative introduces an incentive mechanism where social landlords can benefit from an interest rate indexed to their non-financial performance for each loan.

The bank's endorsement extends to both social and environmental criteria, encompassing social inclusion, disability support, aging population care, urban diversity, occupant health, energy efficiency, greenhouse gas emissions reduction, environmentally responsible practices, and sustainable mobility. Performance in each area is assessed through specific indicators. Should the client meet the predefined objectives annually throughout the loan term, they enjoy a rate increase, which they may choose to contribute to a charitable cause. In cases where objectives are not met, the contractual rate applies without penalty. Through this scheme, Caisse d'Epargne aims to recognize and encourage its clients' efforts in reducing their environmental impact and supporting societal causes, fostering more sustainable and responsible project developments.

It is worth noting that Impact Loans are available not only to social housing providers but also to real estate enterprises, with distinct criteria applied. Real estate entities focus on providing healthy and diverse housing options, while social housing emphasizes inclusion. In both cases, affordable housing schemes are fostered.

The inaugural Impact Loan was initiated by Caisse d'Epargne Ile-de-France in partnership with the Regie Immobiliere of the City of Paris, the second-largest social housing provider in Paris. This 25 million euro loan will cater to the needs of the social landlord, enabling it to secure an interest rate increase of 15 basis points by dedicating at least 20% of annually allocated dwellings to a priority population, as per French law. Both parties have agreed to allocate 50% of the bonus amount annually to a social housing foundation.

This scheme is hailed as highly innovative in Europe, notably for integrating non-financial performance into its mechanism. Similar initiatives exist in the Netherlands. Amidst the COVID-19 recovery phase, this French scheme facilitates social housing investment programs under optimal conditions while fostering a profound social commitment.