Emilio Zito, Head of M&A and Special Projects at EDF, took time to speak to Olivia Cummins about the progression of infrastructure investments ahead of this year's Italian M&A and Private Equity Forum.
Olivia Cummins: Are investors still looking towards Italian infrastructure assets in a low-yield environment?
Emilio Zito: Yes they are – by getting more focused on de-risked / subsidy-based infra assets classes, more often with Italian partners able to “navigate” Italian politics and network as necessary.
OC: How are technological changes affecting growth in the infrastructure sector?
EZ: They affect it as per many other sectors – by making the infra sector generally more effective and helping prevent issues & human mistakes. On the flip side, for some sensitive infra sectors (utility, power, TMT, etc) exposure to technology and digital might also mean exposure to cybersecurity etc. This is an aspect which is particularly watched and checked by investors (in due diligence), as much as by incumbents obviously
OC: Following the Morandi Bridge collapse and as infrastructure investment becomes top of Italy’s agenda, how can investors prepare to ensure returns in what is set to be an active market?
EZ: Using partnerships and appropriate financing / transaction structures, spending the appropriate amount of time (and money) to diligence the asset class, regulatory frameworks and being present on the ground to scout for the right infra opportunity
Emilio Zito will be a key speaker at the annual Italian M&A and Private Equity Forum, 24 October 2018.
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