SAN FRANCISCO, Sept. 8, 2020 — GI Partners, a leading private investment firm, today announced the final closing of its inaugural Data Infrastructure Fund, which totaled $1.8 billion in commitments from a broad group of investors. The fund was oversubscribed and surpassed its initial target of $1.25 billion.
The GI Data Infrastructure Fund continues the firm’s 20-year history of control-oriented investing in hard asset infrastructure companies and properties underpinning the digital economy. The Fund will invest across four data infrastructure subsectors data centers, data transport, wireless access, and tech-enabled infrastructure, primarily in North America. The team, which works closely with the firm’s private equity and real estate teams and leverages the firm’s broad resources, is led by Steve Smith, who was previously CEO of Equinix (the world’s largest data center company), and Mark Prybutok, an experienced data infrastructure investor.
“Technology and communications are the largest and fastest growing drivers of the global economy and the infrastructure that supports these sectors is critical to the operation of every business, government, and household in the developed world,” said Steve Smith. “The disruption we have all experienced in 2020 due to the global pandemic has only served to underline the importance of data infrastructure to everyone’s life.”
“A core thesis of our Fund is to invest in elements of infrastructure closer to the end-user that will support both existing needs, as well as the next generation of critical applications utilizing 5G technology, private networks, the Internet of Things, machine learning, and other innovations,” noted Mark Prybutok.
“Since founding Digital Realty in 2001, GI Partners has always believed in the fundamentals that drive the digital economy, which is now essential to our daily lives,” said Rick Magnuson, Founder and Executive Managing Director of GI Partners. “We are delighted to have a dedicated fund and experienced team led by Mark and Steve, which will build on and strengthen our long-standing position in the data infrastructure space.”
GI Data Infrastructure’s diverse global investor base representing 11 countries includes sovereign wealth funds, pensions, financial institutions, investment management firms, foundations, and family offices. Philip Yau, Managing Director of GI Partners, said, “We are grateful for the strong support of our investors, both our existing limited partners and the many new investors to GI Partners. We welcome the opportunity to be both a capital and thought partner in the data infrastructure space to our investors as well our portfolio companies.”
The Fund was activated in January 2020 when it invested in DR Fortress, the premier data center business in Hawaii. In June 2020, the fund acquired Blue Stream Fiber, a high-speed broadband provider in Florida. GI Partners’ other exited investments in the IT infrastructure sector include The Telx Group, The Planet, SoftLayer Technologies, ViaWest, and Wave Broadband.
Park Hill Group served as placement agent and Kirkland & Ellis served as legal counsel for the raise.
About GI Partners
Founded in 2001, GI Partners is a private investment firm based in San Francisco, California. The firm has raised over $23 billion in capital from leading institutional investors around the world to invest in private equity, real estate, and data infrastructure strategies. The data infrastructure team invests primarily in hard asset infrastructure businesses underpinning the digital economy. The private equity team invests primarily in companies in the Healthcare, IT Infrastructure, Services, and Software sectors. The real estate team invests across a broad range of platforms and strategies.