Ferrovial sells half of UK concessions to DIF

Ferrovial subsidiary Amey has sold a 50% stake in its PFI business – Amey Ventures – to DIF Infrastructure Fund II. The deal will give DIF equal ownership of 10 PFI projects but doesn’t include Amey’s beleaguered contract to upgrade London’s underground rail. Amey’s PFI portfolio is said to be worth over £300m.

Amey, a subsidiary of Spanish group Ferrovial, has sold a 50 percent stake in its PFI unit – Amey Ventures – to DIF’s second infrastructure fund.

DIF: active in
PFI secondary

The deal will see DIF acquire equal ownership of a portfolio of 10 projects procured via the UK government’s private finance initiative (PFI) programme – a standardised procurement process involving the private sector. The portfolio includes roads, courts, defence, education and accommodation projects, some in construction and others already operational.

Both parties declined to comment on the value of the transaction but press speculation estimates Amey Ventures’ assets to be worth over £300 million (€341 million; $468 million). Under the new partnership, both companies agree to work together on selected PFI projects in the future, Amey said in a statement.

DIF and Amey had already conducted business late last year when the Ferrovial subsidiary sold DIF a 50 percent stake in a portfolio of 10 UK school PFIs. The transaction will allow Amey’s owner, Ferrovial, to deconsolidate some debt associated with its British unit, which had £270 million in debt at the end of 2008. Ferrovial’s debt stood at €22 billion as of September 2009.

DIF Infrastructure II recently acquired a 12.5 percent stake in the UK’s largest hospital PFI – the £1.7 billion Bart’s Hospital project – from the Commonwealth Bank of Australia. DIF currently manages a portfolio of €300 million of PPP/PFI projects and renewable energy assets.