Monday 16 May 2011

Chilean toll roads profitable for Skanska

Open PR reports on the success of the sale of 50% of Autopista Central by Swedish firm Skanska to Alberta Investment Management Co - a pension firm.   The report indicates Skanska invested US$350 million into the successful Chilean toll road and sold its shareholding for US$790 million.  Not a bad return at all.  Meanwhile, Skanska still owns a concession for the Antofagasta toll road, involving 117km of new lanes and 207km of upgraded roads planned to open in 2012.  Skanska is a 100% shareholder of its subsidiary in Chile responsible for that concession.

Chile has been a great success in terms of toll roads, with its investment climate, economy and infrastructure requirements matching with well planned and executed toll highways that have plugged real gaps in its highway network.  The roads are well maintained, operated efficiently and perhaps can be seen as a model for Latin America.  It is fair to say that Skanska's report that it sold its share in Autopista Central because of the price offered, is reasonable.  Nevertheless, with one of Santiago's most critical strategic assets, Alberta Investment Management Co. has not bought a bad investment.

(Skanska still has Autopista Central on its website though, showing it needs a bit of work done to keep its website up to date)

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