Borealis, Caisse Said Shortlisted in Port of Brisbane Bidding

Borealis Infrastructure Management Inc., one of Canada’s biggest infrastructure investors, and Caisse de Depot et Placement du Quebec are among bidders picked to make final-round offers for a stake in the Port of Brisbane lease, said three people with knowledge of the matter.

Bidders for Global Infrastructure Partners’ 27 percent stake, including the AustralianSuper Pty pension fund, are studying financial information on the port, said the people, asking not to be identified as the details are private. The holding may fetch as much as A$1 billion ($923 million), they said.

Australian infrastructure assets are attracting interest from pension funds and other institutional investors because of their relative safety and steady cash flows. Australia’s Industry Funds Management Ltd. and a unit of Abu Dhabi Investment Authority in April led a group of investors that paid A$5.1 billion to lease Port Botany, the nation’s second-biggest container terminal, and Port Kembla.

Melbourne-based IFM, Abu Dhabi Investment Authority and QIC Ltd. also own stakes in the Port of Brisbane lease, according to its website. The consortium in 2010 agreed to pay the government of Queensland state A$2.1 billion for the 99-year lease.

IFM had earlier offered to buy GIP’s stake in Port of Brisbane, though GIP opted instead to sell the holding in an auction, according to the people. Final bids for GIP’s stake are due by the end of November, one person said.

Severn Trent

Borealis, an arm of the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System, was part of a consortium that in June abandoned a 5.3 billion pound ($8.6 billion) bid for U.K. water utility Severn Trent Plc. It co-owns the U.K.’s largest ports operator, Associated British Ports. Ontario Municipal, known as Omers, is Canada’s sixth-biggest pension-fund manager.

Caisse de Depot, which oversees pensions for retirees in the French-speaking province of Quebec, had C$185.9 billion ($177 billion) in assets as of June 30.

Spokesmen for Caisse de Depot and AustralianSuper declined to comment, while a spokesman for Omers wasn’t immediately available. Jack Cowell, a spokesman for GIP in New York, declined to comment.

GIP, a fund backed by Credit Suisse Group AG and General Electric Co., is being advised by Morgan Stanley on the sale, the people said. It owns Gatwick Airport in the U.K., as well as stakes in London City Airport and Scotland’s Edinburgh Airport, according to its website.

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