MIRA reveals A$8.7bn equity raising and appoints new Americas chief

The Australian firm announced its fundraising figures for the three months to end 2018 at an operational briefing, with the vast majority of new funds coming from Europe.

Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets has revealed that it raised A$8.7 billion ($6.2 billion; €5.5 billion) of new equity in the three months to 31 December 2018.

The figure includes A$7.4 billion of equity raised in Europe alone, most of which was for Macquarie European Infrastructure Fund 6. Infrastructure Investor reported that MEIF6 had raised around €3 billion by the end of November 2018. It is unclear how much of the equity raised was also for Macquarie Infrastructure Partners IV, the firm’s fifth North America-focused fund that closed on its hard-cap of $5 billion last month.

Macquarie Group revealed the figures in an operational briefing to investors and shareholders in Sydney, reporting the figures for its third quarter which ended on 31 December. Its financial year begins on 1 April.

MIRA had A$116.8 billion in equity under management as at end of December 2018, which chief executive Shemara Wikramanayake described as a “record” at the briefing.

The firm also had A$24.3 billion of dry powder to deploy as of end 2018, thanks largely to the strong fundraising quarter in Europe for MEIF6.

Asked by an investor at the briefing whether MIRA was now coming under pressure to deploy that capital, MIRA global head Martin Stanley said: “We’re under no pressure to invest it quickly – [our investors would] rather we invest it in the right stuff.

“There was a closing just prior to Christmas which has brought that dry powder up quite a lot. Ordinarily, we invest those funds over a three-year period.”

MIRA also announced a leadership change, appointing David Fass as head of MIRA, Americas. He will take on the role on 1 April, replacing Graeme Conway who is taking on the role of chief commercial officer for the broader Macquarie Asset Management Group.

Conway will remain in the US and on the Investment Committee for Macquarie Infrastructure Partners in his new role.

Fass, who joined Macquarie in 2011, is relocating to New York from Europe for his role and will step down as regional chief executive for Macquarie Group in EMEA and from the Group Management Committee as a result.

Macquarie announced that MIRA had divested A$1.2 billion in the quarter. Infrastructure Investor understands the figure includes the sale of the Bayonne Energy Centre in New Jersey, which was completed in October 2018 and was held by listed fund Macquarie Infrastructure Corporation.

When announcing the transaction last year, MIC said that the sale price was approximately $900 million (A$1.27 billion today).

MIRA also confirmed that it was appointed investment manager of The Infrastructure Fund during the quarter, a A$2.5 billion unlisted infrastructure fund previously managed by now-defunct Hastings Funds Management.