River & Mercantile has hired Ian Berry, former head of infrastructure equity at Aviva Investors, to establish an infrastructure investment business.

The £45bn (€51bn) investment group said a number of Berry’s former colleagues would be joining him in the near future to assist in the growth of the business.

Its first infrastructure investment offering is to be an Infrastructure Equity Income Fund, which will focus on delivering long term, stable cash flows to institutional clients through investing in long-life infrastructure.

River & Mercantile said the sustainability of returns to investors and asset-level environmental, social and governance factors would sit at the heart of the investment strategy.

“This focus on the sustainability of income for clients is entirely aligned with the significant demands for new infrastructure to support the energy and digital transition required by the economy,” it said.

Berry joined Aviva Investors in 2009, establishing their infrastructure business by initially launching infrastructure debt strategies before moving on to an infrastructure equity income strategy and building the asset manager’s infrastructure equity platform.

“I am delighted to be joining a group with the vision and ambition to deliver investment solutions to meet clients’ needs through innovative approaches to infrastructure investing,” said Berry.

“We are very excited by the opportunity to continue to provide our investment expertise to clients in both near-term investment opportunities and over the long-term.”

James Barham, River and Mercantile group chief executive, said Berry and his team had an “excellent track record” and “highly regarded both by clients and investment partners alike”.

“Ian is actively progressing a pipeline of well-advanced sustainable investment opportunities for our new fund and we look forward to helping our clients meet both their growth and long-term cash flow needs whilst delivering on their ESG requirements with our new strategy,” he said.

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