John Laing acquires indirect majority interest in Norway’s largest-ever PPP

Tegnebrett+1 bridge

John Laing Group ("John Laing"), a leading international investor and active manager of core infrastructure assets, today announced that it has entered a partnership arrangement to acquire an indirect majority interest from Macquarie Capital in the consortium delivering Norway’s Rv555 Sotra Connection public-private partnership (PPP).

The agreement brings in an investor with considerable experience investing in infrastructure assets. Macquarie Capital will continue to support the project as it progresses through construction – maintaining its oversight of the project. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

The project, the largest PPP in Norway to date, was procured by the Norwegian Public Roads Administration (NPRA), which receives funding from the Norwegian state.

It consists of the design, build, finance, operation and maintenance (DBFOM) of a 9.4km four-lane road link on the Rv555 in Norway’s Vestland County. Following financial close in March 2022, the road is currently in early-stage construction.

The PPP will deliver lower transport costs, better accessibility and increased traffic safety for the municipalities of Bergen and Øygarden. It includes the construction of a four-lane c.900m suspension bridge. 4.6km of road in twin-tube tunnels. three smaller bridges and road and pedestrian underpasses, and dedicated infrastructure for public transport, as well as pedestrian and bicycle paths.

Jamie Christmas, Acting Chief Executive Officer and Chief Financial Officer of John Laing, said: “This acquisition builds on our strong track record in transport public-private partnerships and enables us to further scale our portfolio in Europe.”

Macquarie Capital and John Laing have a successful history of working together, including the Denver FasTracks Eagle P3 (rail PPP in Colorado, USA) and the Australian New Generation Rollingstock PPP (rollingstock and maintenance facility project). In addition, Macquarie and John Laing partnered in 2021 to create Brigid Investments and invest in new retirement living developments in the UK.

The construction joint venture consists of FCC, Webuild and SK Ecoplant, with operation and maintenance being carried out by Intertoll. John Laing has previously contracted with the NPRA on the E39 road PPP, and has prior experience working with the Webuild, FCC and Intertoll on similar infrastructure projects.

John Laing was advised on the transaction by DLA Piper, PwC and Atkins.