Infrastructure developer Ashoka Buildcon and Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets (MIRA), one of the biggest foreign infrastructure investors in India, are seeking buyers for their $2 billion roads portfolio, Ashoka Concessions Ltd, said two people aware of the development, requesting anonymity.
In 2012, along with State Bank of India, Macquarie, through its first India-focused fund, purchased a 34% stake in Ashoka Concessions, a platform to own and operate toll-earning road assets, for ₹800 crore. The remaining stake was held by Ashoka Buildcon. Mint had reported on 29 May that Macquarie was looking to exit its roads portfolio in India.
“The formal process to sell the roads under Ashoka Concessions was launched recently. EY is managing the sale of the portfolio," said the first person cited above.
The second person said Macquarie and Ashoka are seeking an enterprise value of $2 billion for the roads portfolio, making it one of the largest roads portfolio on sale in the market. “They have reached out to Canadian pension funds and other sovereign wealth funds, since the investment ticket size is more suitable for these investors. Talks are at an early stage," the person said.
Spokespersons at Macquarie and EY declined to comment. Ashoka Buildcon did not respond to emailed queries.
Ashoka Concessions’ roads portfolio comprises 15 assets, including six operational BOT (build, operate, transfer) toll projects, one operational BOT annuity project and eight under-construction hybrid annuity projects.
In 2016, Macquarie sold two operational toll road assets in south India—the Farukhnagar-Jadcherla highway in Andhra Pradesh and the Trichy Tollway project in Tamil Nadu—to Spain’s Abertis Infraestructuras SA for ₹1,000 crore.
Last year, it won rights to manage 648km of national highways for ₹9,681.5 crore in an auction conducted by the National Highways Authority of India.