APG and AXA acquire US$1.1 B Ardian fund II portfolio

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APG and AXA acquire US$1.1 B Ardian fund II portfolio

Ardian, announced it has signed an agreement for the sale of a €1 billion portfolio of assets after a competitive auction. The Investors involved are APG and AXA, both existing shareholders of the portfolio since 2006. Ardian will remain the asset manager and advisor of the portfolio. Transaction is subject to the approval of the regulatory authorities.

The portfolio comes from Ardian’s second generation infrastructure fund which closed in 2007, and consists of eight mature core infrastructure assets which are well diversified in terms of geography and sectors. The transaction follows Ardian’s commitment when the fund was launched, to explore liquidity options for investors after the ten-year mark. 

The infrastructure portfolio includes relevant involvement in multiple strategic assets: Italian gas distribution company 2i Rete Gas, French LGV Lisea, Spanish toll road Trados M-45, French rail GSM communications’ network Synerail, French renewable energy company Kallista Energy, Italian Renewable energy company 3 New & Partners, French toll road A88 and Italifian hospital HISI Legnano.

Ardian is a private investment house with assets of US$66 billion managed or advised in Europe, North America and Asia. The company is majority-owned by its employees. It keeps entrepreneurship at its heart and focuses on delivering excellent investment performance to its global investor base.

Financial services provider APG Group provides services such as executive consultancy, asset management, pension administration, pension communication and employers services. APG performs these activities on behalf of (pension) funds and employers in the sectors of education, government, construction, cleaning and glass cleaning, housing associations, energy and utility companies, sheltered employment and medical specialists.

The AXA Group is a worldwide leader in insurance and asset management, with 165,000 employees serving 107 million clients in 64 countries. In 2016, IFRS revenues amounted to €100.2 billion and IFRS underlying earnings to 5.7 billion. AXA had 1,429 billion in assets under management as of December 31, 2016.

Mathias Burghardt, Member of the Executive Committee at Ardian, said:

“Ardian Infrastructure is a pioneer in the market. We continually explore how we can meet the different demands of our investors both by providing liquidity and maximising returns. Indeed, all assets are valued above the net asset value, offering attractive returns for our investors. Ardian will continue its long-term partnership with AXA and APG, and we look forward to continuing to add value by assisting them in the management of the various assets with our deep knowledge of the portfolio.”

Marcus Thiel, Chief Investment Officer at AXA said:

“This investment is a new step in the long-term partnership that we have with Ardian. Collaborating with APG in such core infrastructure assets perfectly fits the needs and the strategy of a long-term investor such as AXA. We share the same perspective on value creation and we are confident that these assets will continue to grow, benefitting from Ardian Infrastructure’s expertise in terms of management.”

Jan-Willem Ruisbroek, Senior Portfolio Infrastructure Manager at APG explains:

“This transaction follows on APG’s strategy to acquire large portfolios of high quality core infrastructure assets, while at the same time significantly enhancing the controls over those assets. Club deals with like-minded investors like AXA, supplemented with leading asset managers like Ardian Infrastructure, is one of our preferred routes of deploying capital. Furthermore, this transaction contributes to our Sustainable Development Investment targets, with significant exposure to renewable energy and high speed rail.”

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