Singapore’s Seraya Closes US$800 Million Asian Infrastructure Fund Backed by BlackRock and AIIB
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Largest-ever private equity fund close for an Asia-based independent fund manager that focuses on next-generation infrastructure to bolster the region’s energy transition and digital infrastructure development
- The fund was oversubscribed and surpassed the target of US$750M
- Funds will be used to invest in mid-market opportunities in next-generation infrastructure assets, with an average check size of $100M
- Target markets are developed Asia-Pacific markets and Southeast Asia
- Seraya Partners has commitments from global institutional investors, including sovereign wealth funds, a multilateral development bank, pension funds, insurers, and family offices across North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific. LPs include Alberta Investment Management Company (AIMCo), Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), and funds and accounts managed by BlackRock.
Seraya Partners, the first Asia-based independent private equity fund for next-generation infrastructure investing, based in Singapore, announced the completion of its first fund, “Seraya Partners Fund I.” The final close was $800 million, including co-investments, surpassing its $750M target.
The Asia-based and focused Fund invests in next-generation infrastructure, focusing on energy transition and digital infrastructure platforms enabled by tech. The mid-market-focused fund is committed to bolstering the region’s transition to net zero and accelerating the adoption of clean sustainable energy.
“Asia’s rapidly expanding cities, intensifying climate change, and aging infrastructure have created a pressing need to address the region’s burgeoning trillion-dollar infrastructure gap. Energy transition and digital infrastructure will be the twin engines to bridge this gap and lead us toward net-zero ambitions. We are deeply grateful for the support and confidence our investors have placed in us to address the infrastructure gap. We are committed to creating value for our investors while building a more sustainable future for Asia,” said James Chern, Managing Partner and CIO of Seraya Partners.
According to the Asian Development Bank (ADB), approximately US$1.7 trillion will have to be invested annually in infrastructure across Asia through 2030 to meet current demand. Seraya identifies supply and demand gaps within the energy transition and digital infrastructure space and has made a solid start to deployment, with 50% of its funds already allocated to the following three platforms:
- Empyrion DC is Asia’s first green data centre operator. Empyrion develops and operates highly energy-efficient hyperscale and colocation data centres, and employs renewable energy to power its data centres. Empyrion is operating and developing projects across multiple markets including North and Southeast Asia.
- Cyan Renewables is the first pure-play offshore wind farm vessel operator in Asia that owns and leases specialised vessels to support all phases of offshore wind farm projects, from installation to operations. In July 2023, Cyan acquired its first ship in a deal with Belgium’s DEME, including a long-term charter with turbine maker Siemens Gamesa for work offshore Belgium. The platform looks to address the severe shortage of vessels serving offshore wind farms. Cyan aims to own and operate a $1 billion portfolio of vessels by the end of 2025.
- Astrid Renew is developing cutting-edge solar, wind, and energy storage solutions in partnership with multinational corporates committed to RE 100 goals, and also local power utilities and regulators.
The Fund has commitments from global institutional investors, including sovereign wealth funds, pension funds, insurers, and family offices across North America, Europe, and Asia-Pacific. LPs include Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB), Alberta Investment Management Company (AIMCo), and funds and accounts managed by BlackRock.
The team will continue focusing on building its existing platforms and identifying new investment opportunities in Fund I. Given the large fragmentation and complexity in the Asia infrastructure market, risk allocation issues, and capacity-building challenges, the team taps into its operator experience and sector expertise to play an active role in owning, building, and developing these platforms. The Fund believes this approach will drive attractive returns in the mid to high teens.
“AIIB’s investment in Seraya Partners shows its commitment to support Asian infrastructure asset managers. It is well-aligned with AIIB’s mission of financing infrastructure for tomorrow. This investment demonstrates AIIB’s commitment to reducing bottlenecks in the infrastructure supply chain through innovative technologies such as offshore wind farm vessels. AIIB looks forward to working with Seraya Partners to unlock new technologies and new ways to address climate change and to better connect Asia and the world digitally,” said Dong-ik Lee, AIIB Director General, Banking Department (Region 1).