EQT buys Spanish car park operator for €180m

The Swedish investor is acquiring Acciona Aparcamientos, which manages 29 car parks and 16,000 parking spaces in Spain and Andorra. EQT’s €1.2bn infrastructure fund will be about 60% invested when its first Spanish investment closes in July.

EQT Infrastructure, the €1.2 billion infrastructure fund managed by Swedish private equity group EQT, has acquired Acciona Aparcamientos, a Spanish car parks operator owned by infrastructure group Acciona. The acquisition is EQT Infrastructure’s first Spanish investment.

EQT Infrastructure is paying €180 million for the car parks business, which includes 29 car parks and 16,000 parking spaces in Spain and Andorra. The acquisition price includes €40 million of company debt, working capital and pending investments of €2 million, and a €5 million payment subject to results, Acciona disclosed in a filing to the Spanish competition authority (CNMV). The deal is expected to close in July.

EQT is appointing Fernando Conte, the current chairman of Spanish tour operator Orizonia, as chairman of the board at Acciona Aparcamientos. The board will also include Rafael Miranda, former chief executive of Spanish utility Endesa. EQT expects the business to generate revenues of €22 million for this year. Acciona said the car parks business generated €23 million in revenues and €12 million in earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) in 2010.

Prior to the deal with EQT, Acciona agreed to sell a 60 percent stake in a car park in Rio de Janeiro to Brazilian car parks operator Horapark Sistema de Estacionamento Rotativo for €10 million, debt free.

In late April, EQT Infrastructure bought Restaurant Technologies, a Minnesota-based company that specialises in the distribution and disposal of frying oils, from US private equity firms Parthenon Capital Partners and ABS Capital Partners.

The somewhat unusual transaction for an infrastructure fund prompted Glen Matsumoto, partner at EQT and investment advisor to EQT Infrastructure, to comment: “Clearly it’s not a bridge, it’s not an airport. In some ways you can look at this as an oil storage company even though it is cooking oil,” he explained.

Following the acquisition of Acciona Aparcamientos, EQT’s €1.2 billion infrastructure fund, launched in 2008, will be about 60 percent invested.