InfraVia realises debut fund with PFI exit

The sale of Tramlink in the UK to Aberdeen Standard represents the final sale of the €170m 2008-vintage fund, which secured a 15% gross return.

Paris-based fund manager InfraVia Capital Partners has realised of its maiden 2008-vintage with the sale of Tramlink Nottingham to Aberdeen Standard Investments.

The sale ensures that the fund has netted a 15 percent gross IRR and a gross multiple of 2.1 times, Vincent Levita, chief executive of InfraVia, told Infrastructure Investor.

The €170 million vehicle’s last asset is responsible for operating the tram network in the UK city. The network has been operational since 2004, although Tramlink only took over the network in 2011.

Despite the UK’s opposition Labour Party vowing to nationalise all PFI contracts, InfraVia maintained that the sales process still generated a healthy demand.

“There’s been a bit of momentum in the UK PFI market but not enough to affect a high-quality asset like Tramlink,”  added Bruno Candès, partner at InfraVia. “What was more difficult, because it was a highly sophisticated and structured asset between the Department for Transport, the City of Nottingham and the European Investment Bank, was getting all of the required approvals.”

Tramlink was among three transport assets in InfraVia European Fund I, which also comprised four renewable energy investments and one water and one telecoms asset. Levita said the portfolio composition will see an “evolution” compared with its €2 billion fourth fund, with more social infrastructure and fibre assets expected.

Levita said Fund IV  will be about 50 percent invested when its latest investment in French broadband group Iliad closes in the coming months. InfraVia’s second fund has also divested three of its eight investments.