International consortium snaps up 81% of Portugal’s motorway concessionaire Brisa
The José de Mello Group and Arcus have sold an 81.1% share in Portuguese motorways concessionaire company Brisa.
The buyers are a consortium of funds comprising Dutch, Swiss and South Korean institutional investors in a deal said to be worth over €2.4Bn.
In a communiqué, the José de Mello Group states that the purchasing consortium comprises APG (the asset management entity for ABP, a Netherlands-based public sector pensions and education fund, the NSP (South Korean National Pensions Service), and SLAM (an asset management subsidiary of Swiss Life, the largest insurer in Switzerland).
The three, between them, “have accumulated experience in the management of companies and infrastructures with long-term investments strategies”, states the Portuguese group.
The acquisition of the main Portuguese motorways concession holder will be completed via a vehicle which is entirely held – both directly and indirectly – by the consortium which is jointly controlled by APG and NPS.
Despite the sale, the José de Mello Group will remain a minority but important shareholder in Brisa with a shareholding of 17% and “will have an active share in the management of the company”.
Vasco de Mello will stay on as chairman of Brisa which manages five concessions and a total of 21 motorways.
The Arcus fund will abandon its role as a Brisa shareholder which it has held since 2012 at the time it launched a PAO with the Mello family.
The company did not reveal the value of the deal, but since Brisa is worth over €3Bn, the transaction can be reasonably said to be worth €2.4Bn for the 81.1% share.
Although agreement has been reached for the sale, the transaction has not yet been concluded and is now awaiting the green light from regulators.
That decision is likely to be made in the third quarter of 2020 according to the José de Mello Group.
According to the Vasco de Mello Group, the transaction “signed in the current context of great adversity” because of the Covid-19 pandemic “is a sign of confidence in Portugal and in the Portuguese economy and represents a unique opportunity for Brisa to strengthen and boost its position in the mobility area.”