Preqin recently surveyed investment consultants active in the infrastructure asset class as part of the 2013 Preqin Investor Network Global Alternatives Report. The Report reveals that 50% of investment consultants interviewed feel that Europe presents the best opportunities in the infrastructure asset class presently, with North America a close second (48%). Investment consultants also viewed emerging markets favourably, with Asia and South America seen as especially promising (45% and 40% respectively). Investment opportunities in the Middle East were felt by 12% of consultants to offer attractive investment prospects. The proportion of consultants that felt that North America and South America represent the best investment opportunities has decreased in 2013 compared to the consultants interviewed in 2012 by 15% and 11% respectively.
In 2013, the majority of consultants are looking to either maintain their infrastructure allocation or to increase their exposure to the asset class. Thirty-eight percent intend to increase their commitments slightly, 17% look to increase commitments significantly, and 30% plan to commit roughly the same amount of capital over the coming 12 months as in the previous year. Only 10% of consultants were intending to decrease their commitment levels to the asset class over the course of 2013, eight percentage points less than those surveyed in 2012.
In terms of route to market, investment consultants active in infrastructure primarily seek to access the asset class via direct fund commitments with 78% of survey respondents recommending this mechanism to clients. Fund of funds vehicles are the next most favoured strategy, with 35% of consultants recommending multi-manager vehicles.