WASHINGTON, D.C. — This week, the American Investment Council (AIC), the National Association of Investment Companies (NAIC), and PitchBook released a new report highlighting private equity’s role in financing, managing and accelerating the completion of critical infrastructure projects across America, including repairing roads and bridges, expanding broadband access for rural and underserved communities, building water and waste management systems, supporting renewable energy projects, and more.
This report, published on the one-year anniversary of President Biden signing the bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, confirms that private equity manages almost $45 billion dollars of capital earmarked for infrastructure investments – up from less than $15 billion one decade ago. Over the past decade, private equity has infused nearly $180 billion dollars into infrastructure projects across America.
“Private equity is financing new infrastructure projects across America – from building major airports, repairing bridges to bringing broadband access to underserved rural communities,” said Drew Maloney, President & CEO of the American Investment Council. “Private equity has been a natural fit for public-private partnerships on infrastructure projects, as our firms are able to provide capital to reduce the burden on taxpayers, regulatory know-how, and precise planning and expertise. We look forward to supporting more communities and projects as the federal government increases investment in our country’s infrastructure in the years ahead.”
“Many Americans aren’t aware that private equity firms are some of the leading investors in U.S. infrastructure and play a critical role in helping people improve their lives on a daily basis,” said Robert L. Greene, President & CEO of NAIC, the largest network of diverse-owned alternative investment firms. “NAIC and AIC members, such as Grain Management, impact every community by investing in essential services such as telecommunications, wastewater management, and energy, and provide hundreds of thousands of jobs in America.”
Recent examples of private equity investment in America’s infrastructure include:
- Transportation: Private equity firms have invested more than $220 billion in almost 1,500 U.S. transportation companies over the past decade, including ports, marine terminals, airports, highways, railways, and more. For example, with the help of investments from The Carlyle Group, John F. Kennedy International Airport is building a brand-new terminal. Once completed, the terminal is expected to attract 10,000 new jobs with a goal of having 30% of new businesses be minority- or women-owned.
- Clean Technology: Private equity is a longtime supporter of the clean technology industry, investing around $150 billion into more than 1,100 clean tech companies and projects over the past decade. Last year was a record year for capital invested with $28 billion in deals. Combined with 2020, almost $50 billion of private equity capital has been funneled into clean tech applications and providers.
- Telecommunications: Private equity sponsors have made deliberate efforts to expand broadband internet access to underserved rural communities. Apollo Global Management and GTCR have recently invested in Lumen Technologies and Visionary Broadband, respectively, to construct new networks that will provide faster and more reliable internet connectivity, particularly in the Mountain West and Midwest regions. The report includes a Q&A with David Grain, the CEO and Founder of Grain Management – a leading private investment firm that focuses on broadband communications infrastructure – on how the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will impact the telecom industry and the role private equity plays in strengthening the U.S.’ telecom network.
- Manufacturing: Private equity has been active in the semiconductor industry and is helping the U.S. regain its standing as a leading chip manufacturer on the global stage. The CHIPS and Science Act helped spur a new $15 billion partnership between Intel and Brookfield Infrastructure Partners to build expanded chip manufacturing facilities in Chandler, Arizona.