Future Fund invests in its first data centre business

28 January 2020 - 12:00 am UTC

The Future Fund has snapped up a slice of Canberra Data Centres (CDC) in its first-ever foray into a technology business, it emerged today.

The Australian sovereign wealth manager acquired 24.1% of CDC from Commonwealth Superannuation Corporation (CSC) on 23 December, but only revealed it had inked the deal at a portfolio update briefing on Tuesday.

Pricing and terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Chief Investment Officer Raphael Arndt said data and telecommunications was an emerging area of interest for the fund, which owns direct investments in six airports in Australia and Europe.

“CDC benefits from the strong thematic of increased use of data and migration to the cloud across all sectors and has a strong growth profile, which we are looking forward to supporting,” he told Inframation.  

The fund had AUD 168bn (USD 113bn) under management as at the end of December and delivered a 14.3% return over the past year, well above its annual return target of 5.5% plus the Consumer Price Index, a measure of inflation.

CPI rose 1.7% in the year to September 2019, the latest data available from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows.  

Investments in infrastructure grew by AUD 3.8bn to AUD 15.5bn over the past six months, and now make up 8.5% of the overall portfolio. This is higher than the 7% target infrastructure allocation.

Despite the strong performance, the fund is steeling itself for bumpy conditions in global equity markets in the coming year, Chairman Peter Costello told reporters at the briefing.

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