- Abrdn’s investment is aimed to accelerate the deployment of the Wessex’s full fibre-to-the-home network across rural parts of south-west England
- This is the first investment by abrdn’s third Core Infrastructure Fund, ASCI III
- ASCI III is targeting €1bn to invest in the Pan-European infrastructure mid-market
Abrdn announced on Tuesday that it has made a majority equity investment in Wessex Internet. Wessex is a full fibre operator in the south-west of England. Abrdn’s investment is aimed to accelerate the deployment of Wessex’s full fibre-to-the-home network across rural part of south-west England.
The investment comes off the back of Blandford-based Wessex being awarded the first subsidy contract under the UK government’s £5 billion Project Gigabit broadband scheme, announced at the end of August.
The investment is the first by abrdn’s third Core Infrastructure Fund, ASCI III. The fund is raising a target €1 billion to invest in the Pan-European infrastructure mid-market. The investment follows on from the final investment in abrdn’s second Core Infrastructure Fund, SLCI II, which invested in the German train rolling stock sector.
“This investment is our second UK rural fibre investment and underpins our core capabilities and ambitions in real assets,” said Dominic Helmsley, head of abrdn Core Infrastructure.
“This kind of investment is crucial to allowing the supply of ultrafast, reliable and cost-effective broadband in rural areas to help drive productivity, connect communities and reduce the digital divide across the UK,” said Alex Anderson, investment director, abrdn Core Infrastructure.
Abrdn manages and administers £508 billion ($542 billion; €563 billion) of assets for clients. The investment arm of the business manages £386 billion on behalf of institutional, wholesale and insurance clients. It is headquartered in Edinburgh, Scotland.