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The 2012 Infrastructure Investor Universe

by Paul Bishop

  • 17 Jan 2012
  • INF

Preqin is currently tracking over 1,350 active investors in the infrastructure asset class globally.  The largest proportion of these investors are public and private pension funds, representing 19% and 17% of the global total respectively, with banks (10%), insurance companies (8%), and asset managers (7%) making up other active types of institutional investor.  In terms of location, more infrastructure investors are based in the US than any other country, with over 26% of total investors currently investing in infrastructure based in the US.  Other important locations include the UK (12%), Australia (7%), Canada (6%) and Switzerland (4%).  As a whole, 43% of total infrastructure investors are based in Europe.

Those investors actively investing in infrastructure opportunities have median assets under management of $4.8bn.  On average they have 4% of total assets committed to infrastructure assets, with an average target allocation of 5.3%.  These figures show that, on average, most infrastructure investors have additional capital reserved for future investments in the asset class, many of which intend to continue investing in 2012.

When looking at the most common route to market utilised by infrastructure investors, the largest proportion (67%) seek to invest via commitments to unlisted funds.  This is followed by those with a preference for direct investments (26%), while only 7% of investors will seek to make listed fund commitments.  This is indicative of the increased volatility associated with investment in listed funds due to their correlation with the equities markets, as well as the importance of private infrastructure fund managers in transitioning investor capital to the development of infrastructure projects.

In terms of the most significant players, three of the top ten infrastructure investors globally are Canadian public pension funds; OMERS, CPP Investment Board and Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan.  This, along with the fact that 51% of Canadian investors in infrastructure will consider making direct investments, reflects the developed nature of Canadian investor universe.  In addition, three of the top ten infrastructure investors globally are based in the emerging market regions of South America and Asia; Corporación Andina de Fomento (CAF), Khazanah Nassional, and Industrial Development Bank of India.  This reflects the growing number of investors coming to market to aid in the development of infrastructure in emerging economies.

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