Nigeria Hires Money Managers for $37 Billion Infrastructure Fund

Nigeria has picked four asset managers to run a $37 billion fund set up to drive investment in roads, railways and power projects in Africa’s largest economy.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo approved hiring money managers for the Infrastructure Corp. of Nigeria Ltd., according to central bank’s spokesman Osita Nwanisobi. Investors in the Infrastructure Corp. of Nigeria Ltd., include Central Bank of Nigeria, Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority and the Africa Finance Corporation. This completes a process that started in March.

The government hired Netherlands-based Sanlam Infraworks, AIIM, a unit of South Africa’s Old Mutual Group, Lagos-based Chapel Hill Denham; Tripple A consortium comprising AfricaPlus Partners and Arc Asset Management as well as Afrinvest West Africa, a Nigerian investment bank.

Following the conclusion of the hiring process, the infrastructure Corporation is expected to begin full operation by the third quarter of 2021, Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria, Godwin Emefiele, said at a virtual event on Tuesday.

President Muhammadu Buhari earlier this year approved 1 trillion naira ($2.4 billion) for the company to help close the huge infrastructure deficit in Africa’s largest crude producer. The West African nation needs at least $3 trillion over 30 years to build roads and power plants to close its infrastructure gap, according to Moody’s Investors Service. This is needed to accelerate growth in an economy that’s just recovering from a recession.

The money managers will raise the rest of the funds. More than one manager was selected to enable adequate coverage of Africa’s most populous country and also create healthy competition, said a senior official of the central bank, who asked not to be identified citing rules.

Nigeria hired KPMG LLP in March to act as transaction adviser for the company.

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