Ardian acquires majority stake in Spanish toll roads from BTG Pactual

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Ardian acquires majority stake in Spanish toll roads from BTG Pactual

AXA Infrastructure Fund III S.C.A, SICAR, an investment firm run by Ardian France, has acquired  65%  in the Spanish company Túnels de Barcelona I Cadí from BTG Pactual Iberian Concessions Ltd.

Túnels de Barcelona I Cadí comprises two assets under a sole concession agreement with the Catalonian Regional Government until 2037:

  • Vallvidrera tunnel and access roads (11.5 km) opened in 1991. This is a key commuter route linking Barcelona city to San Cugat and the Vallés Occidental region.
  • Cadí tunnel  and access roads (28.5 km) opened in 1984. This is the main connection point linking Barcelona and holiday/skiing destinations in the Pyrenees.

Ardian has paid €145.45 million (US181.5 million) for the 65% in the firm. The sale price represents a multiple of 2.46x in euros over the capital originally invested in the transaction by Grupo BTG Pactual.

BTG Pactual Iberian Concession Ltd. and Infraestructuras Viaries de Catalunya, S.A., a company controlled by Grupo Abertis, formed the winning consortium of the bidding process related to the concession of the rights to provide the upkeep and operations of the tunnels. Abertis' stake will remain at 35% following the transaction.

The bidding process was held by the Government of Catalonia during the most critical period of Spain's economic crisis, in October 2012. During its almost 2-year period of operations, the company focused on improving operating margins via a cost-cutting program including the renegotiation of contracts and establishment of new partnerships. In parallel, the recovery in the Catalan economy drove a major improvement in traffic levels.

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