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7 Mar 2017

Abertis closes the acquisition of two toll roads in India for 128 million euros

Abertis closes the acquisition of two toll roads in India for 128 million euros

  • The Group controls 100% of the concessionaire Trichy Tollway Private Limited (TTPL), which manages the NH-45, and 74% of Jadcherla Expressways Private Limited (JEPL), which holds the concession for the NH-44.
  • The assets are located in two states with economic growth rates above the national average for India and with GDP levels that are amongst the highest in the country.
  • The transaction marks the entry of the Abertis Group into the Indian market and represents an opportunity to create platform for growth based on potential future transactions in the region.

Abertis, leading international operator of toll roads, has closed the acquisition from MSIIPL and SMIT infrastructure funds, controlled by Macquarie and State Bank of India, of two of India's most important toll roads, the NH-44 and the NH-45, for a total amount of €128Mn.

Abertis controls now 100% of the concessionaire Trichy Tollway Private Limited (TTPL), which manages the NH-45, and 74% of Jadcherla Expressways Private Limited (JEPL), which holds the concession for the NH-44. The assets are located in Tamil Nadu and Telangana, both states with economic growth rates above the national average for India and with GDP levels that are amongst the highest in the country.

Francisco Reynés, Vice-Chairman and CEO of Abertis, expressed his satisfaction, stating: "This deal is an important step for Abertis in the geographic diversification of its business, moving into a growing market and one of the countries with the strongest growth potential in the world. This transaction bolsters the Group's international leadership status and balances its exposure to markets all around the world."

He added: “The transaction fulfils the Group's requirements for generating shareholder value, satisfies its profitability criteria, and does not compromise either dividend policy or the company's rating”.

Two key road corridors for India

The NH-45 toll road is in the state of Tamil Nadu in the far south of India. Tamil Nadu has seen its per capita income rise by 8% in the last decade, and it is among the top three most popular tourist destinations in India. 

The 94-kilometre-long NH-45 is a key corridor for the country and connects the industrial areas of Trichy and Madurai with the state capital, Chennai.

The NH-44 is in the central-southern Indian state of Telangana. The toll road is part of the main north-south traffic corridor and connects the country's two main technology hubs, Hyderabad and Bangalore. 58 kilometres in length, NH-44 runs through a highly industrialised and commercial area where India’s mining sector has a large footprint.  

The two concessions run until 2026.

Impact of the transaction on Abertis

Abertis has acquired two excellent assets that dovetail exceptionally well with the Group. It extends the average length of the concessions of the company, which will contribute its know-how and industrial development capacity to the project.

In financial terms, the addition of these two toll roads will enable Abertis to consolidate around €30Mn in annual revenue, €25Mn in annual EBITDA and €85Mn of net debt.

This transaction further strengthens Abertis' status as international sector leader, with more than 8,600 kilometres of toll roads under management, and underscores its commitment to the Group’s 2015-2017 Strategic Plan, having entered one of its target markets. It also demonstrates the Group’s capacity to exercise financial discipline and create shareholder value.  

The acquisition of these India assets also provides Abertis with a platform for further expansion in Asia as the Group continues to explore potential new projects in a region that will offer an abundance of investment opportunities in the infrastructure sector over the coming years.

India: a market with significant growth potential

India represents a unique opportunity for Abertis to enter a fast-growing market with robust foundations, a stable legal framework and a growing population, with the country set to overtake China as the world's most populous country in the coming decade.

Today India’s infrastructure sector offers the largest number and widest range of opportunities in the world. It is estimated that India requires around US$450 billion of investment in infrastructure development over the next five years, with the majority of funding required roads, power and urban development.

The Indian government is carrying out wide-ranging economic reforms to boost infrastructure modernisation, including a plan to develop over 50,000 kilometres of toll roads. In recent years, India has favoured a public-private partnership model to modernise its road network, pursuing collaboration with the private sector and applying pay per use solutions to satisfy the country's infrastructure financing needs.

With foreign investment into India continuing to grow year on year, Abertis is the latest of a number of Spanish companies to have established a presence in the country.

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