Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPP Investments) is investing up to €2bn as part of a KKR-led consortium to acquire a 17.5% stake in an Italian telecommunications network from Telecom Italia.

The C$576bn (€392bn) Canadian pension fund has joined the Optics BidCo investor group – which includes the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, Italian infrastructure fund F2i and the Ministry of Economy and Finance of the Italian government – buying NetCo which has an enterprise value of approximately €18.8bn.

CPP Investments said the newly defined NetCo business will be primarily comprised of the fixed network assets being separated out from Telecom Italia, adding that the investor group at NetCo will support the “completion of an extensive upgrade” to the existing network to deliver fibre-based services in urban and rural areas.

James Bryce, managing director and global head of infrastructure at CPP Investments, said: “Our investment alongside these key partners with a shared long-term vision will help deliver high-quality digital infrastructure across Italy as well as generating long-term risk-adjusted returns for the fund.

“We are optimistic that NetCo can represent the first of several infrastructure investments in Italy for CPP Investments.”

To read the latest IPE Real Assets magazine click here.