Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS) and Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan have won a bidding war to acquire the £2.1bn high-speed rail link connecting London with the Channel Tunnel.
Borealis Infrastructure, the infrastructure investment arm of the OMERS Worldwide group of companies, and Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan confirmed a binding contract for the purchase of High Speed 1 (HS1), Britain's only high-speed rail link to the Channel Tunnel, following a competitive tender process.
The British government, through state-owned London & Continental Railways, launched a competition in June to sell a 30-year concession to own and operate the 68 mile HS1 rail network connecting St. Pancras International Station in central London through South Eastern England to the Channel Tunnel.
"HS1 is a high-quality asset ideally suited to our investment criteria and we are extremely pleased that our bid was selected," said Stephen Dowd, senior vice-president, Teachers' Infrastructure Group.
"HS1 will provide stable inflation-protected returns from proven and long-standing patronage levels, along with upside potential as the European Union moves to liberalise international rail travel. Teachers' has positive experience operating major assets in the UK and HS1 further diversifies our global infrastructure portfolio."
Borealis Infrastructure chief executive officer Michael Rolland added: "This acquisition supports OMERS long-term strategy to diversify internationally and we view the UK and Europe as primary markets in meeting this objective," said, President and of. "HS1 operates in an attractive and stable regulatory environment with good long term visibility on inflation linked cash flows."
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