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IRB Infrastructure shareholders approve Cintra investment
Spanish toll road operator to pay €364 million for a 24.9% stake in Indian company
Michael Marray 1 Dec 2021

Shareholders of Mumbai-headquartered IRB Infrastructure Developers have voted in favour of bringing in Spanish toll road developer and operator Cintra, a subsidiary of Ferrovial, as a key shareholder. Cintra Global will pay €364 million (US$411.67 million) for a 24.9% stake in the Indian company.

Bricklayers Investments Pte, an affiliate of Singapore's sovereign wealth fund GIC, will own 16.9% while the Mhaiskar family will continue to hold the largest stake and exercise management control.

At an extraordinary general meeting on November 20, 95% of the shareholders voted in favour of raising additional capital via a preferential share issue to Cintra and Bricklayers. All large institutional shareholders of the company voted in favour of the plan.

IRB Infrastructure is the largest private road and highway infrastructure developer in India, where it manages 23 projects and around 2,000 kilometres of toll road. The portfolio includes 18 build-operate-transfer projects and one airport project in the Sindhudurg district of Maharashtra.

Its highways make up around 20% of the Golden Quadrilateral, a road network linking the country's main economic development centres. Its assets include the Mumbai-Pune Expressway, one of India's main highways. Last year it reported  €630 million in revenue and €310 million in earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (ebitda). 

'Great opportunity'

Virendra Mhaiskar, IRB Infrastructure chairman and managing director, welcomed the approval of the share sale by what he described as "a thumping majority".

The share sale plan was announced in late October. Following the vote it must be cleared by competent authorities and lenders. Final completion is projected to take place in the first quarter of 2022.

Cintra will become a key minority shareholder with representation on the board. It promises to support the company's development, and transfer its international experience in managing toll roads and analyzing new investment opportunities.

“This investment in IRB Infrastructure Developers represents a great opportunity for Cintra to expand into a new market for us – India – that has very promising fundamentals for toll road development,“ says Cintra chief executive officer Andres Sacristan.

He adds: "IRB has a portfolio of high-quality assets and a platform with the capability to capture some of the strong growth expected in this sector. Cintra would work with IRB to enhance its competitive position in the Indian market. Our international experience as an investor and operator would optimize IRB's operational capacity and ESG compliance, a field in which Cintra and Ferrovial are international leaders."

Industry pioneer

Founded in 1998, IRB Infrastructure Developers is listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange. It is a pioneer in the industry, having developed the country's first build-operate-transfer (BOT) concession.

Its business model integrates concessions and construction, and it has a very active presence in infrastructure development in India.

Ferrovial is a member of Spain's blue-chip IBEX 35 index and is also included in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index.

Cintra is one of the world's leading developers and operators of transport infrastructure concessions. It currently manages 1,475 km under 23 concessions in eight countries. Its roads include the 407 ETR (Toronto), NTE and LBJ (Texas), I-77 (North Carolina), I-66 (Virginia), as well as the Autema, A-66 and Ausol (Spain).

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