21 July 2010

Amber Infrastructure Limited (“Amber”), a leading sponsor and manager of social and economic infrastructure projects, is pleased to announce the financial close of the Liverpool Central Library and Archive PFI (“the Project”) which this week was awarded to the Inspire Partnership consortium consisting of the majority sponsor Amber and Shepherd Construction, the design and build contractor. Inspire Partnership will have FM services delivered by an existing partner of Amber, Cofely FM.

About the Project:

The Project was one of the flagship legacy projects for the Liverpool City Council in 2008 as part of the Liverpool European Capital of Culture programme. The library is located in a World Heritage Site and encompasses the design, build, maintenance and financing of the redevelopment of the Liverpool Central Library and Archive.

Under the scheme, the Grade II parts of the building which date back to 1850, including the façade and famous Picton, Hornby and Oak reading rooms, shall be restored. These areas are collectively known as the areas of Historic Fabric. In addition to the refurbishment of the Historic Fabric (approximately 3000m2), the project involves the replacement of the remaining library space (approximately 8,200m2 new build).

Currently, the Central Library provides the full range of library services including lending, reference and information services for adults and children, meetings space and exhibition areas, and extensive public computing facilities. There are also nationally important special collections of rare books and prints, as well as substantial reserve holdings of books, journals, and other documents, built up over the last 150 years. The facilities also house the Liverpool Record Office, which holds the City's archives, and also the Merseyside Record Office. The archive collections are unique and of local, regional, national and international importance.

Financing:

Funding for the project has been structured with 89.5% senior debt amounting to £51 million, provided by Nationwide Building Society and Helaba and 10.5% equity capital and subordinated debt provided by the Inspire Partnership (Amber 80% and Shepherd 20%). Facilities Management services have been subcontracted to Cofely, who are also responsible for providing facilities management services to the British Library.

Construction:

The refurbishment and construction will commence in October 2010 and is expected to take approximately two years, with the project due to re-open to the public in late 2012. Construction will be undertaken by Shepherd Construction.

Giles Frost, Partner of Amber, said today: “The successful award of this Project continues the strong momentum and track record of Amber in successfully bidding for and winning projects. This announcement follows closely on the heels of the recent announcement of the Moray Schools PPP project on which Amber acted as financial adviser and equity arranger to the consortium. Amber continues to have an encouraging pipeline of other opportunities which are currently under review and looks towards the second half of the year with confidence."

For more information:

Giles Frost +44 (0)20 7939 0569

Mike Leto (Project Director) +44 (0)20 7939 0576

Bianca Francis +44 (0)20 7939 0558
Amber Fund Management Limited

Ed Gascoigne-Pees/Ed Berry +44 (0)20 7269 7132/7297
Financial Dynamics

About Amber:

Amber Infrastructure Group (Amber) consists of 50 dedicated infrastructure specialists who have collectively been responsible for originating and developing projects with an aggregate value of more than £8.7 billion in eight countries. Amber is also the Investment Advisor to International Public Partnerships Limited, the listed infrastructure investment company which manages over £2 billion of assets.

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