Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan bets on PE, infrastructure in India

Canada-based Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, one of the world’s biggest pension fund managers, says it is betting on infrastructure and private equity (PE) in this country.

 

“Our initial focus is likely to be private equity and infrastructure. However, it is too early to be definitive on dollars deployed or headcount,” said a spokesperson.

 

Last month, along with AustralianSuper, Australia’s largest superannuation and pension fund, Ontario Teachers made a $2 billion (Rs 14,000 crore) commitment in the National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF). These comprised commitments of $250 million each into NIIF’s master fund and co-investment rights of up to $750 mn each in future opportunities alongside the master fund.

 

Ontario Teachers has backed domestic fund managers such as Kedaara and ChysCapital with multiple funds, which its spokesperson termed “excellent partners”. With NIIF now, added the spokesperson, the plan was to “work with these partners to shape the optimum entry strategy”.

Ontario Teachers has invested in the PE funds of Kedaara Capital a couple of times. It did so in 2013 and then in the fund manager’s $750-mn one in 2017. This year, it invested in the $850-mn ChrysCapital VIII fund.

 

“India is an attractive investment destination and we see the value of having people on the ground,” said the spokesperson.

 

Ron Mock, its outgoing chief executive, recently told news agency Reuters that they might triple the current Asia headcount of around 25 people and were considering opening offices in Mumbai and Singapore.

 

Ontario Teachers managed around C$191 billion ($144 bn) in assets as of the end of 2018, for 327,000 working and retired teachers.

 

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) has mostly bet in India on infrastructure, logistics, malls and financial services. It formed a joint venturewith the Everstone group’s industrial and logistics real estate platform, Indospace, in 2017. And, formed a strategic investment platform with The Phoenix Mills to develop, own and operate retail-led mixed-use developments.

 

CPPIB and Allianz are also the anchor investors in IndInfravit Trust, sponsored by L&T Infrastructure Development Projects.

 

Another Canadian pension fund manager, CDPQ, has also bet on logistics, roads, power and distressed assets in this country.

 



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