Laing to float fund on LSE to raise £270m

Infrastructure group John Laing yesterday unveiled plans to list an infrastructure fund in London raising up to £270m.

Laing, owned by asset manager Henderson Group, will sell up to £256m of infrastructure schemes to the newly formed John Laing Infrastructure Fund (JLIF), in a move flagged up earlier this month.

The fund will use the cash from the flotation to buy the 19 projects, which include the Ministry of Defence headquarters in London, a hospital in Canada, the Metropolitan Police firearms and public order training centre in Gravesend and part of the M40 motorway.

It will launch the flotation in the next few weeks, with admission to the main market of the London Stock Exchange expected in late November. It forms part of the group’s strategy to sell interests in mature infrastructure projects, the company said.

Former chief executive of support services company VT Group, Paul Lester, will chair the fund, which will have first refusal on certain investments sold by John Laing in the next five years.

Lester said pressure on government to cut costs and to boost economic development and efficiency meant the outlook for the fund was positive.

“With our high quality asset base, attractive pipeline and first class management team, I’m confident we can generate value,” he said.

The investment adviser appointed to the fund, John Laing Capital Management, has told it John Laing is likely to make available 17 projects worth about £325m in the next three years. The fund will be debt free at launch and will limit future borrowing to a maximum of a quarter of total assets and is targeting an initial annualised yield of 6 per cent per year.

JP Morgan Cazenove was appointed as global co-ordinator and is joint bookrunner with Barclays Capital and RBS Hoare Govett.

JP MORGAN CAZENOVE

John Laing has appointed JP Morgan Cazenove as global co-ordinator, sponsor and joint book-runner on the flotation of John Laing Infrastructure Fund, while Barclays Capital and RBS Hoare Govett have been hired as joint book-runners.

Laurence Hollingworth, Patrick Magee, Chris Nicholls and William Simmonds will be acting for JP Morgan, making Laing the latest in a long line of flotations and deals that the US investment bank has advised upon.

Hollingworth was named head of UK equity capital markets at JP Morgan Cazenove when Cazenove Group and JP Morgan unveiled a deal last year under which their joint venture, JP Morgan Cazenove, became a wholly owned part of JP Morgan.

Hollingworth and his team worked on flotations including supermarket home delivery group Ocado, former government-owned defence research group Qinetiq, media group Mecom, CPP, African Barrick Gold and Metric Property Investments.

JP Morgan Cazenove claims to be the UK's number one corporate broker, acting for 36 FTSE100 companies, 94 FTSE250 and 68 smaller companies.

On Wednesday, former JP Morgan Cazenove chief executive Naguib Kheraj joined Lazard as chief executive of its international business.