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John Laing gives upbeat, if slightly cautious, update

John Laing (JLIF), the private public partnership (PPP) infrastructure investment company, has posted 2.1 per cent underlying growth in the first quarter of 2013, equal to 8.7 per cent on an annualised basis.

John Laing (JLIF), the private public partnership (PPP) infrastructure investment company, has posted 2.1 per cent underlying growth in the first quarter of 2013, equal to 8.7 per cent on an annualised basis.

It said the actual portfolio value increased by £10.7m to £548.1m during the period, in which time it completed around £30m of acquisitions from the market.

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The dividend was increased by 4.2% to 3.125p per share for the second half of 2012.

The net asset value at the end of the period totalled £542.1m.

The group also revealed it has doubled its credit capacity with a new three-year £150m revolving credit facility.

Paul Lester, Chairman of the John Laing Infrastructure Fund, said: "The start of 2013 has seen JLIF's strong performance continue, with underlying growth in our investments resulting in a 2.1% increase in the value of the Portfolio. This has been further enhanced by market acquisitions in the year to date totalling approximately £30m.

"In recognition of the growth in JLIF's portfolio and the success of the underlying projects, as previously announced the board has decided to increase the dividend for the six month period ended December 31st 2012 by 4.2% which will be reflected in the dividend payable on May 14th 2013."

The group is confident the government's introduction of a new infrastructure procurement model, PF2, will it believes will help boost the flow of projects coming to market and said it believes the pipeline available to the company will increase in both the medium and long term.

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However, it also warned that there continue to be challenges faced by the UK, which JLIF believes may have an impact on infrastructure delivery.

Andrew Charlesworth, Director of John Laing Capital Management(JLCM), the investment adviser to JLIF, remains confident: "We are pleased to have made two new acquisitions in the period, both acquired on the open market. This takes the percentage of the investments sourced from third parties from 41% in 2012 to over 50% in total since the end of 2011.

"The secondary market has been particularly active in the first few months of 2013 with a range of investment opportunities presented to JLIF both in the UK and overseas.

"The new debt facility will enhance JLIF's ability to respond to acquisition opportunities, especially of large portfolios of projects, while supporting JLIF's ongoing commitment to ensure that capital raised in the equity markets remains fully invested, minimising cash drag."

The share price dripped 0.09% to 114.70p by 08:40 Friday.

NR

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