Report: Actis plans $1bn emerging market fund

Having just closed its third emerging markets funds on $2.9bn, the firm is still pursuing a separate infrastructure fund for the emerging markets.

UK-based private equity firm Actis is forging ahead on plans to close a $1 billion emerging market infrastructure fund by the end of the first quarter of 2009, according to local media reports of remarks by the group’s Africa head, Peter Schmid.

The new fund will target investments in the energy, transport and telecom sectors in Africa, China, India, South America and South East Asia. However, due to the continent's massive infrastructure spending needs, Africa would likely see most of the deal flow.

Schmid, who could not be reached for comments by press time, is based in the firm’s Johannesburg office. 

Actis closed its third emerging markets fund on $2.9 billion Monday and has already invested 12 percent of the fund, including the $700 million buyout of power equity maker Alstom in South Africa. The firm began fundraising in September 2007 with a $2.5 billion target and $3 billion hard cap.

Other emerging markets firms have been busy raising funds focused on Africa. UK-based Aureos Capital recently held a first close on its Aureos Africa Fund at $253.5 million. It is targeting $400 million for the fund, which will be eight times larger than its existing Africa-focused funds.