LPs net 2.5x gain in French infra secondaries sale

A US fund of funds acquired interests representing 25% of Meridiam's 2006-vintage debut vehicle.

French fund manager Meridiam has introduced new investors to its debut 2006-vintage fund following the sale of 25 percent of LP interests in the vehicle.

An unnamed US-based fund of funds has bought a quarter of the stakes in the €547 million Meridiam Infrastructure fund, with LPs offloading part or all of their shares and gaining a 2.5x return on invested capital.

The European Investment Bank, which invested €50 million in the fund in 2007, confirmed its partial exit and stated its intention to plough the proceeds into new infrastructure investments. Other LPs include Sweden’s AP Fonden 3, the Greater Manchester Pension Fund, the Lancashire County Pension Fund, the London Pensions Fund Authority and Pearson Pension Group. Some 30 percent of the fund was initially capitalised by Credit Agricole, which has also exited its share.

The Lancashire scheme and the LPFA have not divested their interests, a spokesman for the pensions confirmed.

Meridiam Infrastructure secured 11 deals during its investment period – nine in Europe and two in North America. These were largely comprised of transport investments in countries including Poland, Germany, Austria and Ireland and encompassed both equity and mezzanine debt commitments. The fund had a specific focus on EU Policy Trans-European Network Infrastructure – Transport (TEN-T), the fund manager said in a statement.

Meridiam confirmed the move would not affect its 25-year term but said it would also now provide investors with regular windows to realise their stakes in its other funds.

“Meridiam offers a liquidity process in its third generation of European and North American funds,” a spokeswoman told sister publication Infrastructure Investor. “This will be offered in the next generations of funds and Meridiam could facilitate a similar process on funds not having these liquidity windows in their prospectus.”

Meridiam has two other European infrastructure funds raised in 2012 and 2016, capitalised with €904 million and €1.3 billion, respectively. It also manages two North American funds, with the $1.2 billion Meridiam Infrastructure North America III, which closed in October. The firm also continues to invest its Africa and Energy Transition funds, the latter of which last week acquired Allego, a Dutch electric vehicle charging solution provider.