GLOBAL – AMP Capital says it expects existing investors including insurer China Life, Australian superannuation funds and European pension schemes to allocate to a planned infrastructure debt fund with a target size of $1bn (€0.7bn).

This will be the firm's second debt fund focused on pure infrastructure assets in mature markets.

The first, which closed in June, has so far deployed €218m of the €400m raised from 30 investors.

Andrew Jones, global head of infrastructure, said he expected interest from pension funds, insurers and other institutional investors "looking for defensive, yield-focused things to invest in".

He told IP Real Estate: "We've spent time educating the market, and, [as a result], we've seen a lot of interest in infrastructure as a standalone investment opportunity."

Although Jones acknowledged that competition among infrastructure debt fund managers for capital had increased, he said the manager's deal pipeline would require it to raise more capital to deploy in the New Year.

"One of the things that challenge new entrance is the ability to deploy capital," he said. "Depending on the strategy, opportunities are hard to come by."

Despite stress in the euro-zone, he said his team had identified opportunities in Western Europe and the Nordic economies.

The fund will invest across Europe, North America and Australia.
Senior debt is likely to come from bank club arrangements.

Despite the recent emergence of funds targeting senior debt, they have mostly focused on long-dated PFI-style opportunities.

"There is an active bank market for the quality of assets we're targeting," said Jones. "They're not able to provide leverage as they used to – but that's an opportunity for us."

In separate news, reinsurer Swiss Re has mandated Macquarie to deploy €500m in senior infrastructure debt in Northern Europe in the first phase of a long-term strategy aimed at financing infrastructure businesses and assets.

In a statement, head of external investment mandates Klaus Weber said he expected a substantial evolution in the infrastructure debt market over the next few years.