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Equitix’s New Recruits

November 2011

Two new team members of staff have joined Equitix this month.

Rebecca Collins has joined Equitix as a Development Director in the OFTO and Transmissions sector. Rebecca joins from Ernst and Young LLP where in her most recent role she was seconded to OFGEM as Interim Head of OFTO Transaction design.

In addition to OFTO experience, Rebecca brings a strong commercial awareness of the interface between the public and private sectors. Rebecca has a deep understanding of the U.K. PPP market with a combination of project finance, financial modeling and procurement advisory skills developed over nine years of successfully leading complex infrastructure transactions across a variety of sectors including renewable energy, transport and social infrastructure.

Mark Fowkes has joined Equitix as an Associate Director in the Finance & Commercial team, with particular responsibility for education and other accommodation projects. Previously, Mark was Commercial Manager at Partnerships for Schools, part of the Department for Education, the U.K. Government agency responsible for all capital procurement on the school estate in England.

Prior to moving to PfS, Mark was Director of the Infrastructure Finance Group, Global Banking & Markets at The Royal Bank of Scotland in London. He has ten years investment banking experience working in the RBS Project Finance team, with broad and diversified experience in loan origination, execution, equity investments and derivatives across the global PPP infrastructure market. Mark brings key transactional skills in managing deals to Financial Close timely and efficiently, while maintaining good relations with a wide range of clients.

Geoff Jackson, CEO of Equitix, commented that "Rebecca and Mark will broaden and deepen Equitix’s market knowledge and skills adding to our ability to deliver value to clients and investors."

 


Equitix Fund II announces the acquisition of the Primary Plus portfolio of 6 LIFT assets

18 October 2011

Equitix is pleased to announce the acquisition of a 60% share in the equity, subordinated debt and mezzanine debt interests in 6 LIFT (Local Improvement Finance Trust) companies comprising 11 SPVs. The portfolio includes the Greater Nottingham, North Nottinghamshire, Southern Derbyshire, MaST, Leicester and Sandwell LIFT companies that have a combined capex value of £370m across 45 buildings.

Community Solutions will be taking on the management services contract for all the assets, using their long running experience in the LIFT market and experience of providing management services for community facilities across large areas of the Midlands, Manchester, Yorkshire and the South East England (including Equitix Fund I’s LIFT portfolio).

Hugh Crossley, Chief Investment Officer at Equitix commented: ‘this acquisition places Equitix as a significant Private Sector Partner in this specialist sector which fits very well into the wider PPP portfolio we have built up over recent years’.

 


Equitix Fund II Exceeds £150 million

21st September 2011

Equitix, the UK-based developer, investor and fund manager that specialises in core infrastructure, is pleased to announce that Equitix Fund II has comfortably exceeded its £150 million target, nine months after its first close. All of the new and existing investors are UK corporate or local authority pension funds, a number of which are also investors in Equitix Fund I.

Equitix is in detailed discussions with a number of additional investors, in the expectation that Fund II will reach £250m by the end of 2011.

Fund II has already deployed capital into PFI contracts in healthcare, street lighting and integrated highways, investing LPs’ commitments in delivering long-term, availability-based income, linked to UK inflation.

Hugh Crossley, Chief Investment Officer at Equitix, comments:

"We are pleased with the level of investor interest in Fund II and, as promised, we continue to focus on assets which we expect to generate the predictable, long-term income we are delivering to the Equitix Fund I investors."

Evercore Partners is acting as Equitix’s sole placement agent.

 


Equitix Triathalon Competitors Raise Money for School for Africa

11th August 2011

Six members of Equitix entered the gruelling Jones Lang La Salle property triathlon in July as two mixed relay teams. Competing against a mix of professional and enthusiastic triathletes, our two teams swam, cycled and ran their way to 14th and 73rd place out of 135. A lot of fun was had on the day with a friendly competitiveness between the two teams! In the process we raised over £400 for School for Africa supporting Endana Secondary School in Kenya with the money being put towards equipment for the new science laboratory being built. Thank you to the rest of the team for supporting us.

Sion, Rory, Kirsty, Ariyanna, Andy and Jon

 


Contracts signed to refurbish three more Fenland schools in Cambridgeshire

2nd August 2011

Equitix is pleased to announce that three contracts have now been signed as part of phase 2 for Cambridgeshire Building Schools for the Future. The contracts are to re-build and refurbish Cromwell Community College in Chatteris, Sir Harry Smith Community College in Whittlesey and Meadowgate Special School in Wisbech as part of a major re-development of secondary schools in the local district.

The three contracts are worth £28m in total and will include the provision of new accommodation and facilities at all three schools as well as much of their existing accommodation being refurbished. Work will start on site this month and will be finished by August 2013. The project will be delivered in partnership with Cambridgeshire Learning & Community Partnerships Ltd, the Local Education Partnership (LEP) which was set up a year ago to deliver the Building Schools for the Future (BSF) projects in the county. Kier Eastern are the building contractor.

These projects have been delivered six months ahead of programme, with the projects achieving financial close within 7 months of design commencing. This is down to a great amount of work by all three schools, the County Council, and Partnerships for Schools.

 


Equitix acquires 50% stake in ‘Three Shires’ healthcare projects

7th July 2011

Equitix is pleased to announce that Equitix Fund II has acquired Carillion’s 50% interest in three healthcare Special Purpose Vehicles (SPVs).

Known collectively as the ‘Three Shires’ project, the acquisition includes the provision of ongoing services at community mental health facilities in Lincolnshire, Leicestershire and Derbyshire. All the assets are now fully operational following a successful construction phase that had a combined value in excess of £62million. Carillion FM will continue to provide facilities management services at all of the sites.

Geoff Jackson, CEO of Equitix, comments:

"The ‘Three Shires’ project represents a good fit with our long-term strategy of investing in social infrastructure within local communities. We focus on projects that will help improve the lives of the people they serve while also meeting the needs of our investors, and ‘Three Shires’ will help us continue in that tradition."

 


Equitix Fund II passes £100 million mark

21 June 2011

Equitix is delighted to announce that more than £100 million has now been invested in Equitix Fund II, following an initial close of £70 million at the beginning of the year.

Fund II has already invested in six PFI contracts in healthcare, street lighting and integrated highways, and Equitix is part of the consortium that is preferred bidder on the Greater Gabbard Offshore Transmission Owner project (OFTO). Equitix Fund II expects to announce further closes through the third and fourth quarters of 2011.

The three new investors are all UK corporate or local authority pension funds, two of which were also investors in Equitix Fund I.

Evercore Private Funds Group is acting as Equitix’s placement agent.

Hugh Crossley, Chief Investment Officer at Equitix, comments:

"Building on the success of Fund I, Fund II is making good progress against its target of £150 million having passed the £100 million mark. We are particularly pleased to see investors in Fund I choosing to invest with us again, but also welcome the new LPs, who are not only buying into the asset class, but also into Equitix’s track record of delivering successful investments in core infrastructure."

"As with Fund I, we intend to put investors’ money to work efficiently in UK PPP projects in order to deliver predictable, long-term, inflation-linked returns over the fund’s life."

 


Equitix Acquires 50% Stake in Oldham and Rochdale Street Lighting PFIs

13th June 2011

Equitix is pleased to announce that it has completed its investment in the Oldham and Rochdale Street Lighting PFI projects– two 25-year concession contracts for the provision and maintenance of public street lighting and traffic signs in Oldham Metropolitan Borough and Rochdale Metropolitan Borough.

The schemes involve the ‘Community Lighting Partnership’ consortia working in partnership with the two councils with the aim of cutting long-term maintenance costs, reducing crime and achieving road safety and environmental benefits via:

  • Replacement of approximately 22,000 lighting columns in Oldham (which represents approximately 80% of the total lighting stock in Oldham) and 25,000 lighting columns in Rochdale during an initial five year Core Investment Programme, followed by the replacement of a further 5,467 lighting columns in Oldham and 4,383 lighting columns in Rochdale during a 20-year operational period;
  • Reduction in energy consumption and CO2 emissions; and
  • Installation of state of the art technology for early detection of defective lighting.

The total contract value is £220 million. Equitix is investing alongside Pell Frischmann and E.ON is delivering the scheme through a subcontract.

Hugh Crossley of Equitix, said:
“These two projects are Equitix’s second and third street lighting investment through the Community Lighting Partnership following our acquisition of a stake in the Blackpool Street Lighting PFI project in February 2010. Equitix Fund II is a long term investor in PFI projects on behalf of pension investors, including local authority pension funds. We look forward to working in partnership with the councils, E.ON and Pell Frischmann over the life of the concession.”

 


Equitix Consortium named by OFGEM as Preferred Bidder for Greater Gabbard Offshore Transmission Link

26th May 2011

A consortium led by Equitix, the UK-based developer, investor and fund manager, has been named by OFGEM as preferred bidder for Greater Gabbard OFTO (Offshore Transmission Owners), the largest of nine assets tendered by OFGEM in the first round of procurement. The value of the transmission link to the 500 MW offshore wind farm off the Suffolk coast is forecast by OFGEM to be £316.6m.

The Green Energy Transmission (GET) consortium of Equitix, AMP Capital Investors and Balfour Beatty has been selected as preferred bidder for the 20-year concession to own and operate the transmission asset in the Thames Estuary. Long-term services will be delivered by Balfour Beatty Utility Solutions.

Equitix was also recently shortlisted for all of OFGEM's round 2a projects, in consortium with Balfour Beatty Capital.

Nick Parker, Chief Operating Officer of Equitix, comments: "This project represents an excellent fit with our funds' investment criteria, providing sustainable, long-term, inflation-linked, availability-based payments. We are delighted to be appointed and are looking forward to working alongside OFGEM, the project developer and their consortium partners to achieve financial close later in the year."

http://moneyam.uk-wire.com/cgi-bin/articles/201105260900023301H.html

 


Birmingham Highways Wins Another Award!

13th May 2011

Birmingham Highway Maintenance PFI last night won the award for being the ‘Best Transport or Road Maintenance Project’ at the Partnerships Bulletin Awards Dinner in London. Birmingham Highways a partnership with Equitix, Amey, Birmingham City Council and Lloyd’s Bank, has now won 4 awards including ‘European Services PPP Deal of the Year’ at the Project Finance Journal awards ceremony, also in London.

This prestigious title is another award win in just three months for the £2.7bn, 25-year project. The contract has also recently been named ‘European Road Finance Deal of the Year’ by Jane’s Transport magazine and ‘European PPP Deal of the Year’ by Project Finance International Magazine.

The partnership is committed to a long-term programme of improving Birmingham’s roads and keeping the city moving.

 


Equitix Leisure (Bristol): SPRING HAS ARRIVED!

April 2011

Good progress is being made with the construction of the facilities for the new Leisure Centre at Hengrove Park in Bristol and a ceremony was held on site recently to “top up” the last few litres of water into the Olympic Pool tank ready for testing. On site were Daisy Stagg who, together with Colin Smith the Lord Mayor, Council Deputy Leader Simon Cook, Martyn Osborne (Kier) and Andrew Holt (Parkwood Leisure) put the last bucketfuls of water into the pool.

The reinforced concrete structure of the teaching pool and Olympic pools are tested with water to British Standards prior to the sand/cement render and ceramic tiles being installed. The water level in the tank must not fall by more than 5mm, in order to pass the test. The teaching pool has already passed its test, the water level falling only 3mm. Evaporation can also be taken into account, but they did not need to consider this to achieve the pass.

Kier Western is the Principal Contractor for the construction of the new Leisure Centre. The facilities being provided at the centre will include:

  • 25m x 50m 10 lane community swimming pool (Olympic size)
  • 20m x 10m teaching pool
  • 150 station health and fitness suite
  • 4 court sports hall

Ancillary facilities include a health living zone, aerobics studio, café, crèche, climbing wall and separate wet and dry changing areas. The pools will have adjustable height floors, which will allow a number of different activities to be undertaken concurrently; this also enables the pool to be adapted to a 25m length for junior competitions. The health and sports facilities will provide a much needed facility for the residents of South Bristol.

 


Equitix Reaches Second Close in Derbyshire

April 2011

Equitix are pleased to announce that financial close has been achieved for the non sample schools as part of the Derbyshire BSF programme.

Phase 2 of the programme is valued at over £40m of capital investment to be provided at Shirebrook Academy, Stubbin Wood and Netherthorpe School. The project will be delivered in partnership with Derbyshire County Council and the Local Education Partnership.

Geoff Jackson, CEO of Equitix has said, "We look forward to working with our partners to deliver the three schools and are committed to delivering excellent design and value for the schools as well as the local community." To mark the occasion the Duke of Devonshire attended a sod cutting ceremony at Netherthorpe and the pupils enjoyed seeing the diggers arrive at Shirebrook and Stubbin Wood...!

Shirebrook Academy Principal Julie Bloor and Stubbin Wood Head Teacher Lee Floyd attended the sod cutting ceremony for Shirebrook and Stubbin Wood alongside Ian Stephenson who is the Academy Sponsor and two pupils.

The first phase of the programme to regenerate and build Bolsover, Springwell and Heritage High School was completed in January 2011 with all three schools now fully occupied. Early feedback from the pupils indicates that the new facilities are making a real difference to the educational and academic outcomes.

 


Red Nose Day

March 2011

As part of the red nose day charity efforts the students at Thomas Clarkson Community College in Cambridgeshire participated in a non uniform day donating £1 for the privilege. Pupils were also asked to bake and donate cakes and biscuits which were then sold at break and lunchtime. The whole school participated in the charity day including around 1400 students and staff.

The college decided to split the funds raised between a local, national and international cause. Endana Secondary School in Nanyuki is their chosen charity for the international cause and the money donated is going towards buying books for the school.

Well done and many thanks to all those involved!

 


School for Africa

March 2011

Plans have now been drawn to build a science laboratory at the Endana Secondary School near Nanyuki in Kenya with the money raised by the School for Africa event in December of last year. The building of the science room will allow Endana to prepare its first lot of pupils to study for the national examinations later this year. This is a significant step towards the expansion of the curriculum taught at the school.

In addition to the development of the facilities available to pupils at Endana secondary school, some of the money will be going towards the building of an administration block and staff room. The school administrative functions and teachers lessons’ planning are currently carried out in a classroom set aside for these. Given increased enrolment (206 pupils) and subsequent need for additional classrooms, the school board has placed the administration block as amongst the top priorities in order to release the current classroom used by the administration and teachers for teaching.

 


 

Red Nose Day

March 2011

As part of the red nose day charity efforts the students at Thomas Clarkson Community College in Cambridgeshire participated in a non uniform day donating £1 for the privilege. Pupils were also asked to bake and donate cakes and biscuits which were then sold at break and lunchtime. The whole school participated in the charity day including around 1400 students and staff.

The college decided to split the funds raised between a local, national and international cause. Endana Secondary School in Nanyuki is their chosen charity for the international cause and the money donated is going towards buying books for the school.

Well done and many thanks to all those involved!

 


 

FOR PUBLICATION IN THE UK ONLY.

Equitix Holds £70 million First Close and Announces First Investment

January 2011

Equitix are pleased to announce a First Close of over £70 million for Equitix Fund II after three months of formal fundraising. Raised from corporate and local authority institutions in the U.K, the First Close approaches half of the Fund’s £150 million target.

The size and speed of the First Close demonstrates increased support in the market for quasi government-backed, core infrastructure strategies and more broadly, a strengthening appetite for products which offer consistent, stable returns with significant downside protection. Interest in the U.K. PPP asset class has catalysed since the onset of the financial crisis as investors seek products with more conservative risk-return profiles.

Equitix also announced the early deployment of a portion of their First Close capital, having acquired a stake in the Birmingham Highways PFI project. The team has already fully invested Fund I which closed in the Spring of 2010 on £104 million. Deal flow at the smaller end of the U.K. PPP market has remained resilient throughout the crisis and continues to remain buoyant.

Hugh Crossley, CIO of Equitix said, "This First Closing gives us the capital to start to commit to our substantial pipeline of excellent investment opportunities in the sector. The second Fund stays loyal to our conservative strategy adopted and delivered in Fund I."

Evercore Private Funds Group (“PFG") is acting as advisor and placement agent for Equitix Fund II, having worked with the team on Fund I. Richard Anthony, CEO of Evercore PFG said, “We’re delighted to have executed the First Close in a relatively short period of time. This undoubtedly speaks to the defensive nature of the asset class and specifically, Equitix’s ability to deploy capital in an intelligent way".

About Equitix

Equitix is an infrastructure manager focused on making investments in Public Private Partnerships (“PPP") in the U.K.. Equitix sources deals from construction companies, banks and its own development arm and aims to act as a partner with its government clients for the length of the concessions. The team typically invest in projects with availability based revenue streams in sectors to include healthcare, education, social housing, highways & street lighting, offshore transmission and waste. Equitix Fund I closed in March 2010 on £104 million and is invested across 15 U.K. PFI investments diversified by sector. Equitix employs 25 team members and is headquartered in London. For further information, please see www.equitix.co.uk.

About Evercore Partners

Evercore Partners is a leading independent investment banking firm. Evercore’s Investment Banking business advises its clients on mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, restructurings, financings, public offerings, private placements and other strategic transactions and also provides institutional investors with high quality research, sales and trading execution that is free of proprietary conflicts; Evercore’s investment management business comprises wealth management, institutional asset management and private equity investing. Evercore serves a diverse set of clients around the world from its offices in New York, Boston, Houston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington D.C., London, Mexico City and Monterrey, Mexico. More information about Evercore can be found on the Company’s website at http://www.evercore.com/ .

INTERESTS IN EQUITIX FUND II HAVE NOT BEEN REGISTERED UNDER THE US SECURITIES ACT OF 1933 AND MAY NOT BE OFFERED OR SOLD IN THE UNITED STATES OR TO U.S. PERSONS ABSENT REGISTRATION OR AN APPLICABLE EXEMPTION FROM REGISTRATION.

 


 

Equitix acquires stake in Birmingham Highways PFI project

December 2010

23rd December 2010, Equitix is pleased to announce the completion of its transaction to acquire a 33.3% equity stake in Amey Birmingham Highways Holdings Limited., the Company awarded the 25 year Birmingham Highways PFI Contract in May this year. The 33.3% stake was acquired from Amey Ventures Asset Holdings and the transaction will see Equitix sitting alongside Amey Ventures Asset Holdings and Lloyds Banking Group (Amey’s current investment partner) as an equal one third shareholder.

The project is currently in its initial five year core investment period which will see nearly £300 million of capital improvement activity being delivered across the City’s Highway network, including:

  • Significantly improving the structural and surface condition of carriageways to a pre-determined standard with around 45% of the 2,500km network receiving treatment.
  • Upgrading around 15% of the 4,200km footway and cycleway network across the city
  • Replacing approximately 41,500 street light columns with state of the art LED technology
  • Refurbishing 3 strategically important tunnels
  • Strengthening 29 sub-standard bridges to bring them up to 40 tonne load capacity
  • Replacing around 600 traffic controller signals and replacing traffic signal heads with LED lamps

Following this initial activity, the contract ensures the infrastructure will be maintained at these improved standards for a further 20 years and routine and cyclical highways maintenance for the full 25 year period is also included in the scope of the project. All works and services under the Contract, including the Core Investment Period works are being undertaken by Amey


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