GIC-Abertis acquisition of Mexican toll road operator named LatinFinance's private equity deal of the year

Red de Carreteras de Occidente controls one of the largest toll road networks in Mexico. PHOTO: RED DE CARRETERAS DE OCCIDENTE/FACEBOOK

SINGAPORE - Sovereign wealth fund GIC and Spanish infrastructure firm Abertis' acquisition of Mexican toll road operator Red de Carreteras de Occidente (RCO) has been named private equity deal of the year by a Latin American and Caribbean financial publication.

The annual LatinFinance deals of the year awards were announced on Jan 28. The awards recognise outstanding transactions and institutions in the Latin American and Caribbean capital markets.

The acquisition of RCO was completed in June 2020. Abertis took a controlling 51.3 per cent stake and GIC the remainder of the 72.3 per cent total stake bought.

The remainder of RCO's capital is held by assorted investors, including Mexican pension funds.

The deal, which saw an affiliate of Goldman Sachs Infrastructure Partners sell its 70 per cent stake, was first announced in October 2019.

The Mexican operator controls one of the largest toll road networks in the country, connecting the main industrial corridor of El Bajío with the two largest cities, Mexico City and Guadalajara.

GIC chief investment officer for infrastructure Ang Eng Seng said: "Our investment in RCO, one of the most important toll-road operators in Mexico, highlights GIC's commitment to investing in world-class infrastructure opportunities in the region and around the globe."

Road transportation is seen as a major source of growth for Mexico's economy in the coming years, according to the US International Trade Administration, as port traffic grows and goods are distributed both through the country and further north into the United States and Canada.

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