InfraCo Africa and Helios Investment Partners have teamed up to establish a pan-African investment vehicle to fund climate-aligned infrastructure and growth businesses while working toward achieving the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals.
The Climate, Energy Access and Resilience (Clear) initiative aims to address the growing demand from domestic and international investors for sustainable investment opportunities that can help to close the infrastructure and productivity gap in Africa, which would support communities that are susceptible to the impacts of climate change.
“We have long been aware of the disconnect between available capital and investor interest in African infrastructure and the quantity of bankable, high-quality projects for these investors to invest in,” said InfraCo Africa CEO Gilles Vaes.
Clear will leverage a robust pipeline of projects and growth businesses from InfraCo Africa and Helios across three core themes, namely clean energy and the energy transition; green transportation and mobility; and sustainable growth and consumption.
Ultimately, it expects to raise more than $350-million for investment into sustainable infrastructure and businesses, which will provide at least 100 000 new jobs, connect more than one-million people to power for the first time and avoid 100-million tonnes of carbon emissions.
The duo expect to establish Clear as a private vehicle initially, however, it has been designed and capitalised with a view to listing the vehicle within three years of final close.
“We believe the African continent holds tremendous opportunities for growth with impact driven by demographic growth and rapid urbanisation. We are excited to partner with InfraCo Africa on Clear to catalyse institutional capital for climate-aligned projects and businesses at scale in Africa which we hope will make a significant contribution to delivering sustainable economic growth,” added Helios cofounder and managing partner Babatunde Soyoye.
The announcement follows a UK government event hosted as part of the Finance Day of the UN’s COP26 Summit in Glasgow.
The event highlighted the Mobilising Institutional Capital Through Listed Product Structures (Mobilist) competition run by the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), while exploring the market challenges and solutions to financing climate-smart infrastructure in emerging markets.
“Our flagship Mobilist competition was designed to mobilise large scale investment flows through publicly listed markets,” explained FCDO international finance director Rachel Turner.
“Mobilist is part of the UK government’s efforts to accelerate progress towards meeting the international community’s commitment to contribute $100-billion per annum to support the net-zero pathways of developing countries.”
InfraCo Africa and Helios have reached the final stages of the Mobilist competition and representatives from the two companies joined four other financial institutions at the event.