Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (Mira) has raised $625 million for a Philippines infrastructure PE fund, which counts the country’s largest pension fund as a leading investor.
The Philippine Investment Alliance for Infrastructure is the country’s first infrastructure-dedicated private equity fund. It was first announced in May, when Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) president Robert Vergara disclosed that it would allocate $300 million to the vehicle.
GSIS, the pension for public sector employees in the Philippines, has about $13 billion in assets and $12 billion in investments. Other investors in the infrastructure fund include Mira, Dutch pension fund APG and the Asian Development Bank. It is understood that the four parties constitute the fund’s investor base.
The fund will invest in both brownfield and greenfield projects in areas that include transport, power, renewable energy, water and telecommunication infrastructure.
Mira senior managing director Frank Kwok noted that the Philippines, as one of Asia’s youngest and fastest-growing populations, was in need of significant investment in infrastructure.
The establishment of the fund was driven by the Philippine government, which plans to ramp up national infrastructure projects. GSIS has pledged to support the endeavour, as part of the pension’s move to withdraw from overseas investments in order to invest more at home.
Mira, the infrastructure and real estate asset management unit of Australia’s Macquarie Group, was chosen to manage the fund, given its experience in running similar infrastructure PE funds in markets such as China and India, according to GSIS’s Vergara.
A Philippine national, he joined the pension fund in 2010 after serving as the managing director of multi-strategy hedge fund Cannizaro (Hong Kong).
Mira is regarded by industry players as the biggest Asia-based investor in the infrastructure space with $92 billion in AUM. Last year, it held a final close on the Macquarie State Bank of India Infrastructure Fund at $1.16 billion.
It is in the process of raising $1 billion for the Macquarie Everbright Greater China Infrastructure Fund, with a final close targeted by year-end.