EUROPE – First State Investments International has reached a final closing for its European diversified infrastructure fund, securing total commitments of nearly €1.3bn from European, Asian and North American institutional investors.
The fund, launched in August 2009, has attracted €600m of fresh capital during its fourth fundraising period, with investments coming from insurance companies, pension funds and sovereign wealth funds.
First State's European diversified infrastructure fund has a €1.5bn target size and focus on mature, income-generating infrastructure assets in the utilities, transportation and services sectors.
The fund aims to build a diversified portfolio throughout European OECD countries by targeting low-risk, stable assets expected to generate internal rates of return (IRR) of 10-15% per annum and cash yields of 5-7% per annum.
EDIF has already invested €568m in four core operating European infrastructure assets – the Anglian Water Group and the Electricity North West in the UK; the liquefied natural gas re-gasification plant and gas transmission network Reganosa in Spain; and the broadcast tower operator Digita in Finland.
Philippe Taillardat, First State's co-head of infrastructure investment for Europe, said the firm was pleased with the support it received from existing investors, who took advantage of the sequential nature of the fund to increase their existing commitment.
"We have been able to geographically broaden our investor base with Asian and North American investors," he added.