Aquila Is Said to Market Stake as Demand for Real Assets Surges
(Bloomberg) -- Aquila Capital, an investor in real assets including infrastructure and real estate, is considering selling a stake in itself, according to people familiar with the matter.
The Hamburg-based firm, which had 6.2 billion euros under management ($7.2 billion) as of March 31, is working with advisers to consider proposals from potential investors, said the people, who asked not to be named because the information is private.
“We recognize that the demand for real asset investments is continually increasing,” Daniela Hamann, a spokeswoman for Aquila, said in an email. “Hence, we are not surprised that Aquila Capital, with the breadth and depth of our real asset capabilities, might be considered as an attractive partner.” She declined to comment specifically on the prospect of a stake sale.
Aquila, founded by Roman Rosslenbroich and Dieter Rentsch in 2001, owns everything from wind farms in Denmark to photovoltaic projects in Japan and real estate in Madrid. The firm is working with Berkshire Capital and Moelis & Co. on a potential stake sale, according to the people. Representatives for both declined to comment.
Stake sales have proliferated in recent years in part because investors including Neuberger Berman Group, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Blackstone Group LP have set up dedicated units to buy pieces of asset managers. It’s well-liked by some founders of businesses as it gives them an opportunity to cash out without going public, which isn’t an option for some smaller firms.
Other types of investors are also focused on the space. Earlier this year, an affiliate of New York Life Investment Management called Candriam Investors Group bought a 40 percent stake in London-based real estate firm Tristan Capital Partners. This month, Colliers International Group Inc. snapped up a 75 percent stake in Chicago-based Harrison Street Real Estate Capital. Wall Street banks are also in the mix. In September, Morgan Stanley Investment Management announced the acquisition of Mesa West Capital -- a real estate credit platform -- in its entirety.
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