Institutional Investing in Infrastructure

January 1, 2020: Vol. 13, Number 1

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From the Current Issue


Most pension funds barely scratch the surface on sustainable investment

The recent federal election highlighted interest in climate change, as well as the potential impacts on communities and the population, with the issue No. 1 or 2 in priority for most voters. Climate change is one of a broader set of environmental, social and governance issues percolating through the investment world right now. ESG, or sustainable investing, is the more evolved version of socially responsible investing, which was prevalent in the 1990s.


Two steps forward: Renewables and the openness that comes with greater transparency is driving Asian infrastructure investing well into the 21st century

The Asian infrastructure story over the past 10 years is essentially two stories in one. On the one hand, the region’s road networks, for example, have been growing at about a 5 percent annual rate — much faster than in other developing nations or regions, according to the Asian Development Bank (ADB). Also, per capita electricity capacity has increased by 7.2 percent annually from 2000 to 2012. Anecdotally, cross-country telecommunications, water supply and sanitation are also showing rapid increases in coverage, quantity and quality.


Infrastructure fundraising report: Capital flows grow but so do concerns about the market

Infrastructure fundraising has maintained a solid pace according to most measures. But yearly fundraising numbers, let alone quarter-to-quarter numbers, can be chunky, and often do not tell the whole story. The consensus right now is that strong demand for infrastructure exposure from small and large institutional investors will continue to drive solid fundraising. Though there is more going on under the hood, and not all of it positive, there are signs the market is facing challenges of its own success.


Infrastructure REITs towering over the 5G economy: Massive investments in communications infrastructure will be needed as economies move into the next digital era

Over the next decade, wireless applications powered by fifth-generation (5G) network technologies are expected to disrupt nearly every sector of the economy, requiring massive investments in communications infrastructure. We believe cell tower and data-center owner-operators will be key beneficiaries of 5G-related spending, providing critical assets to carry economies into the next digital era.


Distributed solar in Brazil: With triple-digit annual growth, is Brazil a top-tier investment market for distributed solar?

“Apressado come cru.” (The one in a hurry will have a raw meal.) “Brazil is the country of the future ... and always will be” is an elegant, but tired, quip that sums up persistent foreign timidity toward investment opportunities in Brazil. Since Brazil’s most recent economic crisis in 2014, the headlines regarding the country’s economy have been less than stellar. But 2014 also marked the first year of a historical, committed corruption investigation that has already yielded multiple high-level arrests and prosecutions.


Adapting to climate change with digital technology and infrastructure

When we think of climate adaptation and infrastructure, we typically think of mitigating the effects of higher seas, wildfires and other acts of nature on individual assets. But this focus is too narrow, according to Ardian and Fabernovel in the organizations’ newly released joint report, The Augmented Infrastructure: Digital for Climate?


The global listed infrastructure report: Essential news and notes

The following report reviews highlights of some of the events and trends affecting global listed infrastructure companies in recent months. The Global Listed Infrastructure Organisation (GLIO) Index of “pure” infrastructure companies added (17.2 percent) compared against (14.5 percent) for global equities. Telecom infrastructure (30 percent), water utilities (25 percent), highways and toll-roads (24 percent), airports (23 percent) and electric utilities (20 percent) have been driving the index forward during the past 12 months.


Infrastructure fundraising remains on track: Fund managers on pace to raise more capital in 2019 than in 2018 and 2017

According to IREI’s FundTracker database, preliminary numbers show, infrastructure fundraising in 2019 has outpaced previous years. Through Dec. 10, 28 funds had raised more than $76.0 billion in equity capital. In 2018, $74.6 billion was raised through 38 fund closings, which pushed past the 12-month fundraising total during the same period of 2017 of more than $60 billion.

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