Conduit to open Mexico City office

The Latin America-focused energy infrastructure fund manager also plans to raise $150m from local investors through a listed offering of a new security called a CKD, or certificado de capital de desarrollo, according to chief executive Scott Swensen.

Conduit Capital Partners is opening an office in Mexico City, Conduit chief executive Scott Swensen told Infrastructure Investor.

Mexico City will mark the second office for the Latin America-focused energy infrastructure fund manager, after its New York headquarters.

Swensen said Conduit has been investing in Mexico for 10 years but decided “we would see even more dealflow from having a local presence on the ground”. Recent regulatory changes in Mexico convinced the firm that now was a good time to open the office. 

Scott Swensen

In 2009, the Mexican government for the first time allowed alternative asset managers to raise money from local pensions through a new type of security called a CKD. CKDs, or certificados de capital de desarrollo, are debt-like listed securities through which Mexican pensions are allowed to participate in private investment funds.

Conduit plans to raise $150 million under the CKD program.

The $150 million fund will be managed by a joint venture Conduit is forming with the owners of Asergen, its local investment partner in Mexico. Carlos Jinich, the chairman of Asergen, will serve as chairman of the joint venture company and Marc Frishman will serve as chief executive.

Swensen said opening up a new office is “generally a 12-month process” and hopes to open doors in Mexico City sometime next year.

Conduit isn’t the only infrastructure investor to open up doors in Mexico City recently. Last year, Macquarie Group opened up a Mexico City office as well and raised $268 million from local pensions for a Mexico-focused infrastructure fund through a CKD offering.