Launching the fleet of the Future


Brittany Ferries lead the way to make maritime transport greener in France with the acquisition of an environmental-friendly ferry.

In line with the COP21 objectives, the EIB (European Investment Bank) and Societe Generale developed and signed in November 2016 the first partnership agreement under the Investment Plan for Europe – the Juncker Plandedicated to promote a greener shipping industry in Europe. It represents a EUR 150m program out of a EUR 750m total envelop. The French shipping company Brittany Ferries has decided to be a pioneer in the shipping industry, reflecting its strong commitment to supporting climate action and signed the first financing benefiting from this EIB support.

With the acquisition of its new vessel named Honfleur, a dual fueled passenger-vehicle ferry, Brittany Ferries renews momentum to develop its Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) project. Being fitted with LNG marine engines, the ferry drastically reduces the emission of air pollutants (sulfur and nitrogen oxide) and CO2 emissions. An agreement with Total for procurement of LNG also makes this significant project possible. But the firm doesn’t confine on these improvements and goes with a better service quality and an increase of freight and passenger capacity on its existing routes in the channel area.

The involvement of Societe Generale in this complex transaction as Sole Mandated Lead Arranger, Lessor, Facility and Security Agent, Hedge Provider and Lender, paves the road for the Group to further develop its green financing franchise and contributes to the promotion of greener shipping in Europe. This EIB Green Shipping Guarantee program signed with Societe Generale benefits from the combined support of the Connecting Europe Facility and the European Fund for Strategic Investments. As a reminder, Societe Generale acted as pilot bank and designed this program together with EIB.

To celebrate this major step, the signing ceremony of the agreement has taken place on Monday, December 11th at the Ministry for Europe & Foreign Affairs, in Paris with the presence of Jean-Yves Le Drian, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs.

Brittany Ferries is doubly proud today. It is the very first shipping company to benefit from the framework agreement concluded in 2016 between the EIB and Société Générale, under the GSG Programme, thanks to the Juncker Plan and the CEF!. But also, thanks to this financing it becomes the first French passenger transport company to pave the way towards energy transition using LNG.

Jean-Marc Roué
Chairman of Brittany Ferries’ supervisory board