Macquarie closes third Asia-Pac infra fund with USD4.2 billion as investors thirst for real assets  

Macquarie Asset Management, one of the world’s key investors in infrastructure and real assets, has announced the final close of its third Asia-Pacific regional infrastructure fund with more than USD4.2 billion in investor commitments.

 

The significant oversubscription of almost 50 per cent to the fund – which had an original target of USD3 billion – underlines the degree of global allocator appetite for infrastructure and real asset investments as a protection against soaring inflation and as a source of stable long-term returns at a time of intense market volatility and rising geo-political/macro-economic risks.

 

Macquarie’s latest fundraise – for the Macquarie Asia-Pacific Infrastructure Fund 3 - brings total capital managed under firm’s Asia-Pacific Infrastructure Fund series, which is dedicated to investing in Asia-Pacific infrastructure, to over USD15 billion.

The firm said the new fund had received commitments from a diverse range of returning and new institutional investors from around the world, including pension funds, insurance companies and sovereign wealth funds.

“The infrastructure markets across Asia-Pacific have been maturing at a particularly fast rate, and our clients continue to value the investment merits brought by infrastructure. We are also pleased to see a diverse and international investor base as the asset class matures,” says Frank Kwok, head of Macquarie Asset Management’s Real Assets business in Asia-Pacific.

Verena Lim, head of investments for the Macquarie Asia-Pacific Infrastructure Fund series, says: “While the markets within this region are truly diverse, the investable landscape has broadened materially as we see some common themes driving new opportunities, including digitisation, decarbonisation and sustainability. More importantly, the positive long-term outlook for the region will continue to drive demand for high-quality infrastructure.”

The latest fundraise takes Macquarie Asset Management’s total global infrastructure capital-raising over the last three years to more than USD40 billion. In July last year the firm closed its sixth Americas infrastructure fund with USD6.9 billion in commitments – comfortably exceeding its USD5 billion target. A global leader in infrastructure and real assets investing, Macquarie now manages almost AUD200 billion in global infrastructure assets.

In its Q1 2022 Infrastructure Quarterly Update, alternative assets data provider Preqin said the infra asset class had experienced its most active fundraising quarter on record – with some 20 funds raising a record USD70 billion in the first three months of the year (including new mega-funds from KKR and Stonepeak), representing a 40 per cent increase on the previous peak quarter in Q4 2019.

“With an IRR return of 8.5 per cent over the 10-year period to Q3 2021, investors will continue to be drawn to the asset class, with the prospect of defensive inflation protection in many assets,” said the report’s analysts.

Alex Murray, vice president of research insights at Preqin, commented: “This latest quarterly update illustrates how fast the infrastructure asset class is growing. With a record USD70 billion secured by funds to close in Q1 2022, it’s clear the largest funds are benefiting from investors’ growing appetite for the asset class. However, geopolitical events such as the ongoing conflict in Ukraine are raising concerns about European energy independence risks. Investors and managers globally will be looking for opportunities to help speed up the energy transition and development of renewable capacity in the region.”

In its 2022 Global Infrastructure Report published at the start of the year, Preqin analysts said infrastructure asset under management were expected to reach almost USD1.9 trillion in 2026 – with infrastructure overtaking real estate as the largest real asset class.

 

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