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Japan's GPIF, Australia’s TCorp buy stake in Brussels Airport

By Asia Asset Management  
January 10, 2020

Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) and TCorp, the investment firm of Australia’s New South Wales state, have acquired an unspecified minority stake in Brussels Airport from one of Canada’s largest pension funds for an undisclosed sum.

The Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan (OTPP), which held 39% in the Belgian airport before the stake sale, says it will still remain the single largest shareholder after the deal.

“We look forward to working with our new co-investors in what is truly one of the premier capital city airports in Europe and a centre of economic activity in Belgium,” Dale Burgess, OTPP’s senior managing director for infrastructure and natural resources, says in a statement on January 8.

GPIF used a fund of funds managed by US private market investment firm StepStone Group to acquire the stake.

According to a spokesperson for the Japanese pension, it’s common practice for GPIF to invest in infrastructure projects in this way.

“GPIF currently has three fund of funds vehicles for its infrastructure investments, which are managed by StepStone, DBJ Asset Management and Pantheon,” the spokesperson tells Asia Asset Management.

GPIF’s infrastructure portfolio was worth 293.5 billion yen (US$2.68 billion) as of March 2019. It began to outsource these investments in 2018.

The world’s largest pension fund, GPIF had 162 trillion yen of assets under management as of June 2019.

TCorp currently has A$107 billion ($73.5 billion) of funds under management.

OTPP, which has stakes in five European airports, had $201.4 billion of net assets as of June 2019.