Transurban Launches A$1.9 Billion Raising for Australia Tunnel Project

By FeaturesDow Jones Newswires

MELBOURNE, Australia--Toll-road operator Transurban Group (TCL.AU) said it will launch a 1.9 billion Australian dollar (US$1.43 billion) capital raising to help fund its share of a tunnel project in southern Australia that it has been chosen to operate until 2045.

The company said Tuesday it would raise the money through a fully-underwritten equity raising, offering shares on a 3-for-37 basis at A$11.40 each. That will add to an increased A$1.1 billion syndicated bank facility and additional funding from markets as required to help cover Transurban's A$4 billion share of construction work on the West Gate Tunnel project.

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Work on the tunnel, which is designed to ease congestion along Melbourne's M1 highway and redirect thousands of vehicles a day from two main bridges, began this week and is scheduled to finish in 2022.

Transurban, which has developed and manages urban toll-road networks in Australia and the U.S., said it has now finalized a contract with the government of Victoria state that will see it build, manage and collect tolls on the West Gate Tunnel.

The company's portfolio currently includes 13 roads in Australia, including the CityLink roadway connecting highways around Melbourne. It also owns two stretches of express lanes in northern Virginia, near Washington.

Transurban reaffirmed its plans to pay a dividend of A$0.56 a security this financial year, including the A$0.28 distribution previously announced for the first half.

The company said the institutional component of the entitlement offer is set to be completed Friday, and the retail leg of the share offer will open next Tuesday and close on Jan. 24.

Write to Robb M. Stewart at robb.stewart@wsj.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

December 11, 2017 17:31 ET (22:31 GMT)