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NEWS Last modified on November 15, 2013

Record year for global transport infrastructure deals, KPMG says

Global advisory firm KPMG says 2013 is set to be a record year for transport infrastructure deals – which includes two airport deals.

The firm says global transactions of transport infrastructure assets have risen steeply since the beginning of the year for airports, ports and highways projects.

In the first half of 2013, KPMG says they were $16.6 billion and by the end of the third quarter it had risen to $23.5 billion.

This already surpassed every year since 2008 and a rise on the $9.6 billion in 2012 and $14 billion in 2011.

The majority of assets being acquired in 2013 have been either in Europe or Asia and in the UK it includes airport deals.

London Stansted was bought by the Manchester Airport Group for £1.5 billion ($2.4bn) and a 9% stake in London Heathrow was sold by Spain’s Ferrovial to Universities Superannuation Scheme for £395 million ($636 million).

Steffen Wagner, KPMG’s European head of transport M&A, says there are three main drivers for the trend.

"Public budget restraints across debt ridden countries especially in Europe have forced national governments to privatise national infrastructure and look for private operators and investors in order to secure the operation of strategic transport infrastructure and hub networks.

“Secondly, private investors like pension funds are constantly looking for investment opportunities with steady cash flows and growth prospects and transport infrastructure targets including ports and airports can offer these opportunities.

“Thirdly, strategic investors are increasingly investing in infrastructure assets, especially in emerging markets where growth forecasts are significantly above the mature markets in Western Europe and North America," Wagner says.

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