GLIL, the £1.3 billion infrastructure joint venture between the London Pensions Fund Authority, Greater Manchester Pension Fund, Merseyside Pension Fund, West Yorkshire Pension Fund and Lancashire County Pension Fund, is participating in a £1 billion financing deal for UK rolling stock.
The funding is for new Bombardier trains for the new South Western franchise operators FirstGroup and MTR and the transaction was led by the Rock Rail consortium, with GLIL and SL Capital, part of Standard Life, acting as partners. In a statement on the deal, the three partners said: “This latest deal represents the largest single UK rolling stock deal for which all senior debt is provided by institutional investors.”
The new rolling stock will enter service from mid-2019 and consists of 90 new Aventra trains, to be built by UK manufacturer Bombardier Transportation. GLIL investment committee member and senior investment manager at Greater Manchester Pension Fund, Danny Hobson, commented: “This project is an excellent example of how pension investors can work with the private sector to help build the future of the UK. We are heavily reliant on our rail infrastructure, and these upgrades will mean better passenger experience while at the same time helping to provide stable returns for the GLIL-affiliated pension funds up and down the UK.”