Mizuho launches $200m Asia fund

Japan’s Mizuho Bank is establishing an infrastructure fund of up to $200m, with Mizuho itself contributing $125m of the total.

Japanese lender Mizuho Bank has announced the establishment of an infrastructure fund, Mizuho AsiaInfra Capital, which will be worth up to $200 million.

The fund, which will be backed by $125 million of capital from Mizuho Bank, will focus on infrastructure projects in emerging Asian countries and will support investments made by Japanese companies “to contribute to the development and economic growth of the Asian region”.

While not explicitly stating target sectors, Mizuho noted in a statement that it envisaged “a need to develop and/or maintain and replace existing infrastructure in sectors including, but not limited to, power generation, transmission, water treatment, toll roads, railways, airports or seaports”.

Mizuho said there was a need to make co-investments alongside companies in emerging Asian countries and to support negotiations with local governments and local financial institutions. Mizuho’s fund will be involved in the early stages of projects and will participate in the operation and management of projects as an equity provider.

Mizuho said the fund would use its longstanding “knowledge, experience and network” in project finance to liaise with Mizuho’s own project finance-related divisions and offices in Asian countries as well as with local financial institutions.

Mizuho Bank is part of Mizuho Financial Group, the second-largest financial services company in Japan. It regularly features in Infrastructure Investor’s top ten global mandated lead arranger (MLA) league tables.

In January this year, Mizuho formed a strategic alliance with Zug, Switzerland-based private markets specialist Partners Group to jointly develop and distribute global private equity and infrastructure products to the Japanese pension market.