Corsair launches open-ended fund as $3.4bn Citi fund winds down

The new vehicle this week added Vantage Airport Group and plans to focus its strategy on airport and airport-related investments.

Corsair Capital has launched a new open-ended infrastructure vehicle as it begins to realise its $3.4 billion Gateway Infrastructure Investments fund.

The infrastructure arm of the New York- and London-based manager, Corsair Infrastructure Partners, has begun adding assets to the new Corsair-Vantage Investment Partners fund, this week using the vehicle to buy North American and Caribbean airports operator Vantage Airport Group from Gateway Infrastructure Investments. It is understood that the fund will be pursuing an investment strategy targeting other airports and airport-related investments. This is thought to be globally-focused with a US bias to it.

Vantage’s portfolio includes the redevelopment and management of Terminal B at LaGuardia Airport in New York, the operation and management of John C Munro Hamilton International Airport in Ontario and the management of two airports in Cyprus.

“While there is no change in Vantage’s status as a wholly-owned [Corsair Infrastructure Partners] portfolio company, the new fund will provide Vantage with superior long-term shareholder alignment,” said Hari R. Rajan, head of Corsair Infrastructure Partners and lead director of Vantage, in a statement.

Corsair declined to comment on the fund’s strategy, targets or current size beyond Rajan’s initial statement describing it as a “perpetual partnership with no fixed duration, capitalised by high-quality long-term institutional investors”.

Corsair-Vantage Investment Partners is the first infrastructure fund launched by Corsair since it took over the $3.4 billion Citi Infrastructure Investments fund in 2015 and changed its name to Gateway Infrastructure Investments. It was generating a negative net IRR of 2.7 percent as at the end of June 2018, according to the New Mexico Educational Retirement Board.

Last month, Gateway sold its stake in container terminal company DP World Australia to DP World. A significant stake retained by a Corsair Infrastructure Partners-managed vehicle is not related to the Corsair-Vantage fund.

Last year, Corsair attempted to increase its holding in another Gateway investment, announcing the €1.3 billion purchase alongside APG of 59.2 percent of Spanish toll road operator Itínere. However, a dispute with Madrid-based operator Globalvia, which also claimed to have bought Itínere, meant the situation remains unresolved and is being fought in Spanish courts.

The other remaining asset in the Gateway fund is Kelda Group, holding company for Yorkshire Water in the UK. Corsair and partner DWS are believed to have been searching for a new owner for the company for over 12 months.