India’s Piramal Group has tied up with Dutch pension fund APG Asset Management to invest $1 billion in Indian infrastructure companies over three years, in a move that would help indebted firms access funds to complete projects.
A sluggish economy and stalled bureaucratic decision-making for the past two years thwarted capital investment and dented earnings, making it tough for infrastructure companies to raise funds and launch or complete road and power projects.
Piramal, controlled by billionaire Ajay Piramal, and APG will invest in local infrastructure companies as part of the deal, the two sides said in a statement on Wednesday.
Piramal and APG have each initially committed $375 million for investments under the alliance, the companies said.
Many Indian infrastructure companies borrowed heavily in the past few years when the economy was one of the fastest growing in the world, but were squeezed by a slowdown in growth last year and a slide in the rupee to record lows.
India has ambitious plans to fix its creaky infrastructure with an aim to spend $1 trillion on the sector by 2017, half from private sources.
Led by one of India’s 50 richest people, Piramal has evolved from a textiles manufacturer in the mid-1980s into a group with interests in pharmaceuticals, glass, financial services and real estate.