Antin plans €350m Paris IPO

Founders Alain Rauscher and Mark Crosbie will retain “the bulk” of the company’s ownership, with the IPO to provide flexibility to expand into new strategies.

Antin Infrastructure Partners is planning an initial public offering of €350 million on the Paris Stock Exchange as it seeks to fund growth plans.

The Paris- and London-headquartered fund manager declined to specify the size of the entity being floated, though co-founders and managing partners Alain Rauscher and Mark Crosbie said they will retain “the bulk” of the firm.

Antin, which was founded in 2007 following a spin-out from BNP Paribas, has raised four flagship funds, the latest of which amassed €6.5 billion last year. It has also recently returned to the mid-market, raising €2.2 billion in June for Antin Infrastructure Partners Mid Cap I.

In May, it made a string of hires for a “next generation infrastructure” strategy. The firm said on a call unveiling the IPO that it is in the process of talking to LPs regarding a fund for the strategy.

“We want to raise capital to fund our growth plans,” Crosbie said on the call, explaining the reasons for the IPO. “We also think an IPO will strengthen our brand, which is important for all relevant stakeholders. It will reinforce our ability to attract and retain top quality talent and retain flexibility to expand into new strategies.”

“We could think about doing core, debt or longer-duration,” Crosbie added. “We could also consider future strategies where infrastructure meets real estate.” He explained that the firm is looking for adjacent strategies to its value-add approach where it could leverage off its current skillset. An expansion into new geographies, as it has done in recent years with North America, is also under consideration.

Antin will, however, continue to focus on the flagship business. Antin Infrastructure Partners IV is 50 percent committed, said Melanie Biessy, the firm’s chief operating officer, and the group will begin talking to LPs about a first closing for the fifth instalment when this becomes 75 percent committed. She said a first close on Antin Infrastructure Partners V is anticipated in mid-2022 and a final closing in 2023. The size of Antin’s flagship series has risen by 80 percent, fund on fund, since its launch.

Brexit barrier

Antin has typically operated jointly out of Paris and London since its launch. In explaining its decision to list the firm in Paris, Rauscher and Crosbie said although London had limited flexibility for the level of ownership the duo wanted to retain, a listing certainly could have taken place in London were it not for some of the barriers created by Brexit.

The €350 million raised by the IPO will be supplemented by a limited sale of existing shares by Rauscher and Crosbie. The pair will sit on Antin’s board alongside Biessy, while a further four independent directors will be appointed.