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Cerestra to raise $300 mn education-infrastructure fund
Photo Credit: Shah Junaid/VCCircle

Real estate-focussed private equity firm Cerestra Advisors Ltd has floated an offshore education-infrastructure fund to raise as much as $300 million (Rs 2,000 crore), a financial daily reported on Friday.

The target corpus includes a green-shoe option of $100 million, Mint reported, citing managing director Jasmeet Chhabra.

Chhabra said Cerestra also plans to launch an infrastructure investment trust (InvIT) sometime soon.

The education fund will invest in school buildings that are part of a large chain of operators. The firm aims to organise the sector by creating an institutional market for sale and lease back of school infrastructure in the country, Chhabra said.

Cerestra will also add on-campus student housing to its portfolio to become a full-service education infrastructure asset owner.

Cerestra became part of The Capital Partnership Group (TCP) after financial services company Religare Enterprises sold it to the London- and Dubai-based private investment firm in 2016.

Cerestra raised around Rs 1,000 crore for its first fund, Cerestra Edu-Infra Fund, according to the report.

It has built a portfolio of K12 schools, besides acquiring biotech, life sciences and apparel parks.

In May 2017, VCCircle reported that Cerestra bought a school asset in Hyderabad.

Its other school assets include properties of Bangalore-based Jain Group of Institution, Mumbai-based Witty International and GEMS Education.

Cerestra also has a joint venture with Singapore-based fund Lighthouse Canton. Under this arrangement, it had acquired Alexandria Knowledge Park at Genome Valley in Hyderabad in 2016 with the objective of building a large cluster of third party-owned research and development infrastructure at a single location.

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