Laerernes Pension drives AP Moller’s Africa fund to imminent $1bn final close

The infrastructure vehicle could exceed its original target, depending on the manager’s ongoing talks with potential investors.

Danish manager AP Moller Capital has secured a further $117 million for its Africa Infrastructure Fund, bringing the total raised to $982 million.

The latest round of fundraising has been secured from Denmark teacher’s pension scheme Laerernes Pension, as well as several smaller private investors, a spokeswoman for AP Moller told Infrastructure Investor.

AP Moller Capital is the third infrastructure manager Laerernes Pension has invested in, with the scheme having previously invested in two Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners funds and with Partners Group. It was also one of four Danish pension funds to buy 50 percent of the 252MW Gode Wind 2 offshore wind farm in Germany in 2014.

The Africa Infrastructure Fund had raised $865 million by February, following its launch last year. AP Moller is hoping to close the fund “in the next few months” on its target of $1 billion, although the spokeswoman indicated this could be slightly more given its ongoing dialogue with potential investors. She confirmed the fund is closed to other investors bar those it remains in discussions with.

AP Moller said it will focus on investments after the closing of the fund. The manager experienced a setback last month when its first planned investment in Zambian utility Copperbelt Energy Corporation, alongside CDC, fell through after it failed to reach an agreement with national utility Zesco on a power-supply agreement. However, AP Moller says it has screened and evaluated 200 investments and has shortlisted 15. The capital is expected to be fully invested within four years by the 10-year fund. AP Moller declined to comment on the returns targeted by the vehicle.

“I believe, we have jointly [with investors] established the basis for a rather unique and compelling proposition,” said Kim Fejfer, chief executive of AP Moller Capital. “It is now our task to turn this capital into sustainable projects to drive job creation and improve living standards across Africa. As we now enter the investment period, the entire team will focus on maturing the construction and acquisitions opportunities in Africa that we have developed over the last year.”

Alongside Laerernes, the fund has secured investment from fellow Danish pension schemes PensionDanmark, Laegernes Pension, PKA, PFA, Danica Pension and Danske Invest, as well as two Swedish SEB pension funds.