A consortium of institutional investors comprising the Future Fund, QIC, Global Infrastructure Partners and OMERS has successfully acquired a 50-year lease of the Port of Melbourne.
The Victorian government has selected the Lonsdale Consortium, comprising Future Fund, QIC, Global Infrastructure Partners and OMERS, as the new custodian of the Port of Melbourne.
According to a statement by the Victorian Premier, the Port of Melbourne has been leased to the consortium for "more than $9.7 billion".
Ten per cent of the lease proceeds (ie, more than $970 million) will be invested in regional and rural infrastructure projects. Under the Federal government's asset recycling project, the Victorian government will be entitled to an additional 15 per cent of the proceeds.
The Port of Melbourne is Australia's largest container, automotive and general cargo port. As part of the successful bid, the Lonsdale Consortium will expand the existing capacity of the port.
Future Fund Board of Guardians chair, Peter Costello, described the Port of Melbourne as a "high quality asset" and "an important link between Australia and its trading partners".
"It will be an important contributor to our long-term investment objectives as Australia’s sovereign wealth fund," Mr Costello said.
QIC head of global infrastructure Ross Israel said, "The Port of Melbourne is core infrastructure – it is a critical and strategic piece of the Victorian and Australian logistics supply chain."
"Our consortium has developed a long term vision and business plan. Leveraging our global port and regulated asset experience QIC is focused on delivering long term stewardship and improvements to the port and for its users," Mr Israel said.
The Lonsdale Consortium was advised by Gresham Partners and Credit Suisse as its financial advisers and Herbert Smith Freehills as its legal adviser. The transaction is expected to close on 31 October.
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