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Local sources said that Borealis Infrastructure, the infrastructure arm of the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS), and Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec are among bidders shortlisted to make final-round offers for Global Infrastructure Partners' stake in the Port of Brisbane lease.
Bidders for Global Infrastructure Partners' 27 % stake, including the AustralianSuper Pty pension fund, are studying financial information on the port. The holding may fetch as much as A$1 billion ($923 million).
The port is currently owned by Global Infrastructure Partners (26.7 %), Industry Funds Management (26.7 %), Brisbane-based fund manager QIC (26.7 %) and Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (19.9 %). The group acquired the asset in 2010 through a 99-year lease with the Queensland government for A$2.3 billion in 2010.
In another deal, a consortium led by IFM, in April, paid $5.1 billion for the 99-year lease for NSW's Port Botany and Port Kembla, or 25 times earnings. In contrast, Port of Brisbane was sold at a multiple of 17 times back in 2010. This evidence the increasing interest of institutional investors for infrastructure assets.
The Port of Brisbane is Queensland's largest general cargo and container port. Between July 2012 and May 2013, it handled 34 million tonnes of cargo, including 983,000 TEUs.