AMP Capital acquires 28-year Aussie prison PPP

The firm says its Community Infrastructure Fund is starting to attract interest from global investors, having welcomed its first overseas LP earlier this year.

AMP Capital has bought the Kalgoorlie-based Eastern Goldfields Regional Prison Redevelopment Project from developers Lend Lease and MLC for an undisclosed sum.

The deal is being funded by the firm’s 10-year-old, open-ended Community Infrastructure Fund. A PPP with the government of Western Australia, it involves the design, construction and commission of a new 350-bed prison and the demolition of the existing 100-bed facility, along with the provision of maintenance services.

The project’s concession has a duration of 28 years, including a three-year construction period. “The acquisition allows CommIF to expand its geographic exposure to Western Australia, providing our investors with further diversification benefit,” said Andrea McElhinney, the fund’s manager, in a statement.

The vehicle currently holds 13 social infrastructure assets in Australia and New Zealand, spaning the education, health, justice, defence, water and community sectors. Largely targeted at domestic institutions and high-net-worth individuals, it is starting to catch the eye of overseas investors, AMP said.

“Offshore interest in Australian infrastructure has been a major theme of the local market during the last two years and social infrastructure has not been immune to this, with the first offshore investor coming into CommIF this year,” McElhinney noted.