Projects vary considerably in how risks are allocated, both between highway authorities and concessionaires and between them and their supply chain.
Whether based on availability only, or with exposure to partial or full traffic volume and pricing risk, our experience covers new continental highways, national roads and bridges, streetlighting and local highway maintenance projects, with a strong emphasis on refinancing road assets.
We also work with projects encountering revenue shortfalls and/or technical issues and our approach of working closely with technical advisors, lenders and sponsors brings confidence to project cashflows.
Sustained passenger growth, regulatory visibility and a highly fragmented market are all attractive features for investors seeking some economic exposure through investing in rail.
With rolling stock able to access both asset finance and project finance, the sector benefits from a sophisticated fund-raising market which can tailor offers to the particular features of each project, and can refinance existing debt to exploit favourable market conditions.
Since privatisation in 1989, overseas infrastructure investors have established substantial ownership of water assets in England.
More recently, further external finance has however been attracted to finance major new infrastructure, such as Thames Tideway.
However, the environment for future returns looks tough with PR19 having concluded at a record low cost of capital, Ofwat imposing record fines for misreporting and underinvestment and a growing threat of renationalisation.
Support from UK Government’s Digital Infrastructure Investment Fund has supplemented strong investor demand in full fibre broadband. With growing environmental, social and governance (ESG) pressure on corporates to reduce emissions while delivering their growing data needs and with 5G and data-hungry self-driving vehicles on the horizon, the confluence of data, ethics, energy and innovation provides a strong space for bolder investors.
Amberside have worked on a number of major roads projects internationally and after recently producing operational models for three UK projects, have been engaged to provide ongoing support in understanding the implications of major defects in the pavement.
The projects were each in need of significant unplanned remedial repairs and with our support, the project companies have been able to understand the implications of the additional costs on funding covenants and shareholder returns. In one instance, having provided a model that rationalised a particularly complex suite of funding documents, Amberside then supported the board through negotiations with the consortium of banks, allowing a settlement agreement to be reached with the subcontractors, and ultimately for an equity shareholder to exit the project.
"We are happy to have been able to support these complex projects, and take great satisfaction in being able to provide support during a difficult time, to the benefit of all stakeholders." Paul Austin – Director, Amberside Advisors Ltd
Amberside worked with Coast to Coast Ltd – the private sector provider of Water and Sewerage services for 'Package C' to the Ministry of Defence (MoD), which covers the MoD facilities for the North and East of England. Coast to Coast Ltd was the Private Finance Initiative (PFI) special purpose vehicle owned and managed by Severn Trent International and Costain, which has since been rebranded to Severn Trent Services Ltd.
Amberside created a new financial model for the company to: allow them to re-examine and assess their existing financing arrangements; provide cover ratio and financial information to the senior debt provider; ensure the shareholders have the most current valuation and yield projections; and to provide the basis for a profit share mechanism between Coast to Coast and the MoD. Our modelling support helped to build confidence in the project's cashflows, which helped the client satisfy all of the project's key stakeholders.
"It was a pleasure to be involved in such a complex yet fulfilling project. This project required all our regulatory knowledge of the water sector and PFI/PPP in order to ensure that the model was simple to understand and user-friendly." – David Scrivens, Director, Amberside Advisors Ltd