ADIC-UBS Infra fund is liquidated

UBS Asset Management and state-backed Abu Dhabi Invest AD have dissolved their Middle Eastern infrastructure fund due to weak market conditions, both companies said in a joint statement. No investments were made.

Almost one year after the ADIC-UBS Infrastructure Fund reached its first close at $250 million, both sponsors decided to end the joint venture citing weak market conditions.

The fund was a partnership between UBS Asset Management and state-backed Invest AD, owned by the Abu Dhabi Investment Council (ADIC), and was targeting investments in the Middle East and Africa. But both companies have now decided to scrap the vehicle. The statement said: “The decision reflects the companies’ assessment of the regional fund-raising climate for illiquid infrastructure investments in the region.”

The firms added that “no investments have been made by the fund” but stressed that both parties will continue to separately look for “high quality” opportunities in the region.

The 50:50 joint venture had been looking to reach a final close of $600 million to invest in transport networks, power, water, education and health facilities. The fund was supposed to have been the first of several joint vehicles to capitalise on a reported $400 billion in infrastructure opportunities over the next decade, the fund had said in its first close announcement. At the time, a second, $1 billion infrastructure fund was also mentioned.

Mark Thompson was chief executive of the ADIC-UBS Infrastructure Fund but Reuters reported yesterday that he is thought to have left the vehicle a month ago.