Fund Manager of the Year

First Place: KKR

Second Place: Brookfield Asset Management
Third Place: I Squared Capital

The Global Fund Manager of the Year is also the Fund Manager of the Year for North America. KKR closed its fourth global infrastructure fund with $17 billion of commitments in 2022, over $10 billion of which has already been deployed in deals including the $15 billion take-private of data centre platform CyrusOne.

Other key transactions in the region include the $1.9 billion acquisition of Clearway Energy’s thermal business. Clearway Community Energy consists of thermal infrastructure assets that provide steam, hot and chilled water and, in some instances, electricity to commercial businesses, universities, hospitals and governmental customers across the US.

Equity Fundraising of the Year

First Place: KKR

Second Place: Blackstone
Third Place: Ardian

KKR closed its KKR Global Infrastructure Investors IV Fund with an immense $17 billion of commitments. The fund proved to be the largest fund raised in all of 2022, narrowly beating out Stonepeak and Brookfield for the top slot. The size of the fundraise, along with its Asia and core platforms, surprised even KKR’s own global head of infrastructure, Raj Agrawal, speaking to us in October 2022. Indeed, the difference between this fundraise and fundraises past was shocking, with Fund IV being more than double the size of its $7.4 billion predecessor.

Deal of the Year

First Place: CyrusOne (KKR, Global Infrastructure Partners)

Second Place: JFK New Terminal One (Ferrovial, Carlyle, JLC Infrastructure, Ullico)
Third Place: VLS Environmental Solutions (I Squared Capital)

CyrusOne has wiped the board at this year’s awards, claiming the prize for Global Deal of the Year, Digital Deal of the Year and North America Deal of the Year. The $15 billion de-listing was the largest data centre M&A transaction of all time.

KKR and Global Infrastructure Partners now intend to apply their expertise and resources to accelerate the company’s international expansion in key digital gateway markets. It already operates from more than 50 sites in the US and abroad.

Energy Deal of the Year

First Place: Gemini (Quinbrook Infrastructure Partners)

Second Place: South Jersey Industries (JPMorgan Asset Management)
Third Place: FirstEnergy Transmission (Brookfield Asset Management)

The $1.9 billion financing of solar and storage project Gemini marked the largest tax equity financing of a single renewables project in the US to date. The Nevada-based project is planning 690MW of solar energy generation capacity and 380MW of storage capacity by the time it’s built, which is projected for next year.

Gemini is being constructed on federal land 25 miles north of Las Vegas. It will feature over 2.5 million solar modules and power 400,000 homes. It will also displace 1.5 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions.

Energy Transition Deal of the Year

First Place: Scout Clean Energy (Brookfield Asset Management)

Second Place: Black Mountain Energy (UBS Asset Management)
Third Place: ACES Delta (Haddington, AIMCo, GIC, Manulife, OTPP)

Investing from its Global Transition Fund, Brookfield gained a generation capacity of 1.6GW when it paid Quinbrook Infrastructure Partners $1 billion to acquire Scout Clean Energy. Furthermore, due to the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act in the middle of the closing process, the firm will see substantial gains in solar production tax credits. Scout’s portfolio includes over 1.2GW of operating wind assets, including 400MW managed on behalf of third parties and a pipeline of over 22GW of wind, solar and storage projects across 24 states, including almost 2.5GW of under construction and advanced-stage projects.

Transport Deal of the Year

First Place: JFK New Terminal One (Ferrovial, Carlyle, JLC Infrastructure, Ullico)

Second Place: Purple Line (Meridiam, Star America)
Third Place: JFK Terminal 6 (Vantage Airports, American Triple I, RXR Realty, JetBlue)

Sealing a $9.5 billion financial close, the first in a series of redevelopment projects at New York’s JFK Airport was restructured to accommodate the realities posed by covid. The transaction also saw the introduction of innovative interest rate risk hedging strategies to adapt to a financing world that was very different to when the project was originally agreed. The terminal will comprise over 2.5 million square feet in a new state-of-the-art building, featuring natural-lit public spaces and cutting-edge technology. It will also create more than 10,000 jobs with a goal of 30 percent participation of minority- and women-owned businesses.

Digital Infrastructure Deal of the Year

First Place: Dobson Fiber (iCON Infrastructure)

Second Place: CyrusOne (KKR, Global Infrastructure Partners)
Third Place: Databank (Swiss Life Asset Managers, EDF Invest)

iCON Infrastructure joined hands with family-owned Dobson Fiber to support its $700 million fibre deployment plan across Oklahoma, Arkansas and Texas. The investment is targeting underserved communities in those states and came just a few months after the US government approved a $65 billion commitment to supporting nationwide fibre deployment. Dobson Fiber has been operating as a telecommunications provider for over 85 years, offering connectivity, internet and voice solutions via its 5,000-mile fibre network. iCON now owns a 57 percent stake.

Energy Investor of the Year

First Place: Blackstone

Second Place: Stonepeak
Third Place: Hull Street Energy

Blackstone wrapped up 2021 with a $1 billion investment in FirstEnergy stock, earning the firm a seat on the electric services company’s board. A month later, in January 2022, Blackstone invested $3 billion in Invenergy Renewables, the largest private renewable energy company in North America, with over 175 projects totalling nearly 25GW developed across four continents and powering the equivalent of 8.5 million homes. Meanwhile, in May, Blackstone’s credit arm acquired a 49 percent stake in Elba Liquefaction Company, a Georgia-based LNG facility, for an undisclosed amount.

Energy Transition Investor of the Year

First Place: Ares Management

Second Place: Climate Adaptive Infrastructure
Third Place: Brookfield Asset Management

Ares’ first-ever dedicated climate vehicle, Ares Climate Infrastructure Partners Fund, closed in December 2021 on $2.2 billion – surpassing the total amount the firm has invested in climate infrastructure, $2 billion, since 2015. Four months later in March, Ares Infrastructure and Power invested up to $600 million in SB Energy, a utility scale solar, energy storage and technology platform backed by SoftBank Group. Established in 2019, SB Energy plans to deliver 10GW of renewable energy and storage projects by the end of 2025.

Transport Investor of the Year

First Place: Macquarie Asset Management

Second Place: Carlyle
Third Place: Ridgewood Infrastructure

Last year, Macquarie sealed a deal to acquire RailUSA, a company that operates the 430-mile Florida Gulf & Atlantic and the 228-mile Grenada Railroad in Mississippi, adding to its rail portfolio which also includes the former Australian operations of Genesee & Wyoming.

Meanwhile, via its ownership of the Green Investment Group, Macquarie was also part of a $215 million investment in Washington, DC-based electric vehicle company Inspiration Mobility. Inspiration partners with fleet businesses to finance, build, own and operate the real assets that enable a rapid and profitable deployment of electric vehicles.

Digital Infrastructure Investor of the Year

First Place: DigitalBridge

Second Place: Stonepeak
Third Place: Northleaf Capital Partners

DigitalBridge recapitalised Texas-based data centre platform Databank by raising around $1.5 billion for a new perpetual capital vehicle to house the asset. The firm also agreed to an $11 billion take-private deal alongside IFM Investors for the Nevada-based company Switch, with plans to scale the business both domestically and internationally. Switch is currently a leader in exascale data centre ecosystems, edge data centre designs as well as next-generation technology innovation. Meanwhile, DigitalBridge also kickstarted its credit strategy with the $220 million financing of Everstream.