Australia’s Future Fund has acquired a 24.1% stake in Canberra-based CDC Data Centres for an undisclosed sum, marking the sovereign wealth fund’s first investment in a data centre.
CDC operates four data centres in Australia. It announced the deal in a statement on January 24, but did not directly identify the seller of the stake.
The company says one of its shareholders, Commonwealth Superannuation Corporation, retains a 24.1% share after the sale, New Zealand civil infrastructure firm Infratil owns 48.2%, and CDC’s founders hold the balance.
A Future Fund spokesperson tells Asia Asset Management (AAM) that the stake was acquired from Commonwealth Superannuation Corporation, which supervises superannuation funds for Australian government employees.
The Canberra-based company and Infratil had acquired a combined 96% interest in CDC for A$784 million (US$530.8 million) in May 2016.
According to the data centre operator, the “strategic investment” by Future Fund “is a clear endorsement of the increasingly important role CDC’s digital infrastructure plays in the safe and secure functioning of Australia”.
An investment consultant in Hong Kong says investing in data centres has become increasingly popular among Asian institutional investors.
“Demand for data centres continues to grow within the region, primarily driven by global cloud providers. With their stable cash flows, many Asian investors such as Singapore’s GIC have been actively investing in such real assets,” the consultant tells AAM, speaking on condition of anonymity.
The Future Fund had A$168 billion of assets under management as of December 2019.