Macquarie is targeting 15 billion pesos ($1.1 billion; €750 million) for its Mexican infrastructure fund, a person with knowledge of the fundraising effort told InfrastructureInvestor.
The Macquarie Mexican Infrastructure Fund, the first peso-denominated fund focused solely on infrastructure opportunities in Mexico, expects to reach a first close by the end of the year, the person added. It will be seeking capital from Mexican institutional as well as international investors.
The fundraising will coincide with Mexican pensions' first foray into private equity investing. Earlier this month, WAMEX Private Equity Management raised $55 million from Mexican institutional investors for a Mexican Stock Exchange-listed vehicle that will invest alongside a traditional private equity fund.
Plans for the Macquarie Mexican Infrastructure Fund were first disclosed in a footnote in Macquarie’s 2009 annual results presentation, published in May.
The fund is managed by Macquarie Capital, Macquarie’s investment banking division. Macquarie Capital set up an office in Mexico City in January. The office is headed by senior managing director Mark Ramsey and includes several employees transferred from Macquarie’s New York office.
The fundraising effort also comes at a time when Mexico is increasingly prioritizing infrastructure investment as a part of a national plan to promote economic growth and spur job creation.
“We want to assign more resources to: alleviating poverty and malnutrition, taking care of our children’s health and education, building more infrastructure for development and public safety to build more universities,” Mexican President Felipe Calderon said in a national address to the nation on 11 October.
Calderon’s government has also launched a National Infrastructure Fund (FONADIN) to promote private financing of infrastructure in the central American country of 110 million.
FONADIN will begin with a sum of over 40 billion pesos and over the next 5 years, it will be able to channel resources of up to 270 billion pesos, according to a February 2008 press release issued by Calderon’s office.
A Bloomberg report citing FONADIN director Federico Patino said Macquarie would be raising the fund in cooperation with FONADIN.
A spokesperson for FONADIN could not be reached for comment before press time.