3i sets up £700m fund backed by APG, ATP

The new vehicle will be used to acquire assets, including Belfast City Airport and a UK utility, from an EISER fund that is nearing the end of its life.

3i has sealed a landmark transaction that will see it acquire a portfolio of assets from London-based EISER Infrastructure via a newly established £700 million (€863 million; $825 million) fund.

The vehicle has received a £36 million capital injection from 3i itself, with commitments also coming from Dutch pensions ATP and APG.

Investors in the €1.1 billion EISER Global Infrastructure Fund, in which the assets are held, will be given the opportunity to either participate in the new vehicle or liquidate their stake through the portfolio transaction. The fund, launched in 2006, is nearing the end of its life.

The portfolio about to change hands includes Belfast City Airport, which handled about 2.7 million passengers last year, as well as ESP Utilities Group, which according to 3i is the second-largest independent gas transporter and the third-largest independent electricity network operator in the UK.

It also includes a stake in Herambiente, an Italian waste treatment business, and holdings in four concession companies in Spain, comprising two operating shadow toll roads and two bus terminal interchanges.