Macquarie Indian funds to pocket €128m on double road exit

The transaction will allow Spain’s Abertis to enter the Indian market at a time when it is looking to expand its Asian footprint.

Abertis has reached an agreement to acquire two major Indian toll roads from funds managed by Macquarie and State Bank of India for €128 million. 

The $910 million Macquarie SBI Infrastructure Fund and the $260 million SBI Macquarie Infrastructure Trust will sell 100 percent of Trichy Tollway, which manages the NH-45 highway, and 74 percent of Jadcherla Expressway, which holds the concession for the NH-44 highway, to the Spanish developer.

The two India-focused infrastructure vehicles are managed by a joint venture between Macquarie and the State Bank of India. The fund aims to provide outside investors with access to Indian assets, while the trust is solely open to domestic institutions. IFC is a minority shareholder in the fund. 

Macquarie declined to comment on the return it made on the deal and the performance of its Indian funds.
The NH-45 toll road is a 94km corridor located in the south tip of India, with an estimated average daily traffic of 17,000 vehicles. It connects three tourist destinations in the state of Tamil Nadu. 

Situated in the central-southern state of Telangana, the 58km NH-44 is part of the north-south traffic corridor which connects the two metropolises of Hyderabad and Bangalore. It had an estimated average daily traffic of 21,000 vehicles last year and runs through the heartland of the Indian mining industry.  

Abertis said the two assets, which operate under concessions running until 2026, are located in states that have economic growth rates above the national average.

It explained it would continue to consider potential new projects in India over the coming years, adding that the acquisition helped the company form a platform for further expansion in Asia. 

“This deal is an important step for Abertis in the geographic diversification of its business, moving into a growing market and one of the countries with the strongest growth potential in the world,” noted Francisco Reynés, the company’s vice-chairman and chief executive. 

Abertis currently manages 8,650km of toll roads across the globe, it said.