Exclusive: Novacap targets C$500m for debut infra fund

The Montreal-based firm is expecting low-teen returns for its inaugural infra fund, targeting North and South American assets.

Canadian private equity firm Novacap launched its first infrastructure fund around two months ago and is targeting C$500 million ($391 million; €331.5 million) to invest in North and South America, a source familiar with the fundraise told Infrastructure Investor.

Novacap Infra Energy I will invest in value-added greenfield and brownfield assets “from Canada to Chile,” the source said, adding it had a pipeline of power and transportation assets for potential investments.

The fund has a 12-year lifespan and is expecting returns in the low teens, the source continued. It has a C$750 million hard-cap and could hold a first close in the first quarter of 2018.

The firm declined to comment.

Founded in 1981, Montreal-based Novacap manages around C$2.3 billion in assets and has typically invested in technology, telecommunications and the industrial sector. It created the Infra Energy group this year when it hired three partners who previously worked together in the asset management part of engineering company SNC-Lavalin.

Etienne Lavoie-Gagnon is the group’s managing partner and was vice-president of asset management at SNC-Lavalin, managing a C$3 billion infrastructure portfolio in energy, transportation and social infrastructure. He is joined by senior partners Claude Bourque and David Crouch.