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Consortium Acquires 33.33% stake in Cross London Trains

A consortium comprising Dalmore Capital (“Dalmore”) and Equitix Investment Management (“Equitix”) has signed agreements to acquire a 33.33% stake in Cross London Trains Holdco 2 Limited (”XLT”) from 3i Infrastructure Plc (“3i”).

XLT was established in 2011 to finance, own and maintain 115 Siemens Desiro City Class 700 trains for the Thameslink passenger rail franchise.

XLT is one the largest single rolling stock fleets in the UK. It is part of the wider £7bn government funded infrastructure upgrade to provide essential congestion relief to London and the South East and significant additional capacity to support anticipated passenger growth.

XLT is in the final stages of acceptance with 1,140 carriage units in operation on the Thameslink corridor (connecting Kings Cross, St Pancras International, Blackfriars, London Bridge, Gatwick and Luton Airports and key commuter sections such as Sussex, Kent, Peterborough, and Cambridge).  The Class 700 fleet is expected to set new reliability standards for performance and add capacity for 60,000 additional peak passengers with trains running every 2-3 minutes through the centre of London.

Given the importance of the project for the network, the revenue is based on a lease structure benefiting from a Section 54. Undertaking from the Department for Transport for the first 20 years, with full ownership of the trains being retained at the end of this initial period.  This acquisition complements recent strategic acquisitions made by Dalmore and Equitix in the UK rail sector.

Michael Ryan, Chief Executive Officer of Dalmore Capital said “We are delighted to add XLT to our existing portfolio of rolling stock assets.  Assets like XLT with unique fleet characteristics, demonstrable benefits for network users and long term visibility on returns are very attractive to our investors.”

Geoff Jackson, Chief Executive Officer of Equitix, says “We are very pleased to have secured an interest in XLT which builds on our existing portfolio of high quality rail assets like HS1, Inter-City Express Programme West and Wales & Borders rolling stock. XLT is an excellent fit for our investors and further strengthens our position in the UK rolling stock market.”

Cantor Fitzgerald acted as financial advisor and Clifford Chance as legal advisor to the Consortium.




BlackRock Real Assets sells operating renewables portfolio to UK infrastructure investor

BlackRock Real Assets(“BlackRock”) has reached an agreement with  on the sale of five operating wind farms and one operating solar project (the “Portfolio”) located across the UK. This marks the fourth realization in the past 3 months for BlackRock’s Renewable Power platform and the latest addition to Equitix’s significant capabilities in the renewable energy sector.

The Portfolio achieved commercial operations between 2010 and 2015, and has a proven track record of consistent operational performance. The Portfolio was optimized by BlackRock through bringing the projects through construction and early stage development and optimizing the Portfolio’s debt capital structure through a refinancing process. The de-risked Portfolio provides Equitix with long-term income from a high-quality core infrastructure asset.

Rory O’Connor, Global CIO and Head of Europe for BlackRock Renewable Power, commented, “We are delighted to partner with Equitix on this renewable power transaction. This operating portfolio is testament to BlackRock’s strong investment, financial and technical capability in renewable power. We are very pleased with this sale and the realization of value from this portfolio for our clients, who are showing increased interest in climate infrastructure opportunities to deliver returns with a purpose.”

Hugh Crossley, Chief Investment Officer for Equitix, said: “As we continue to diversify and grow our portfolio, we are always looking out for attractive opportunities to acquire high-quality assets that meet our criteria. We are confident that this portfolio from BlackRock does just this. We have demonstrated a strong track record in our ownership and management of a wide range of infrastructure assets and, as such, we’re pleased to be further consolidating our capabilities and adding these assets to our institutional investment portfolios.”

RBC Capital Markets and Linklaters LLP are the financial and legal advisors for this transaction for BlackRock. PKF Francis Clark and Allen & Overy are the financial and legal advisors for this transaction for Equitix.


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