Partners Group opens Houston office

The firm intends to use the new base as a platform to scout for energy deals in the US and Latin America.

Partners Group today announced the opening of its third US office in Houston, Texas.

The launch brings the Swiss-based investment firm’s total number of locations worldwide to 18. The new base will be headed by Todd Bright, managing director and head of infrastructure Americas at the company.

The move is intended to provide Partners Group with a platform to further explore energy opportunities in the Americas, a sector in which it is already active both through direct investments and commitments to funds.

“Houston is also a major gateway to Mexico and other Latin American countries – so this office is the ideal complement to our existing São Paulo office in terms of expanding our access to both private markets investments and also our clients in Latin American markets”, commented Bright in a statement.

Last February, Partners Group acquired a majority stake in Fermaca, a Mexican gas pipeline business, for $750 million. Other recent energy investments sealed by the firm include interests in two gas-fired power plants in Texas with a combined capacity of more than 1,500 megawatts.

“We continue to see positive structural changes supporting private equity and infrastructure themes in Latin America, such as the growing middle class driving consumption and the need for expansion capital expenditure in energy infrastructure to accommodate increasing urbanization levels,” added Christoph Rubeli, partner and co-chief executive at Partners Group.

The news follows a rather busy first half of the year for the firm, which closed its Global Infrastructure 2012 fund in January on €1 billion – twice the size of its predecessor, Global Infrastructure 2009. The same month, Partners Group sealed a strategic alliance with Mizuho Financial Group (MFG) and Mizuho Trust & Banking Co to develop global private equity and infrastructure products for the pension fund market in Japan.

Also in January, Japan Solar, an investment consortium it set up in partnership with Equis Funds Group, raised $250 million towards its target of $500 million. The joint venture’s proceeds were already fully committed to future investments by February, according to Infrastructure Investor Research & Analytics.