in brief

Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP) has announced the appointment of Joseph Blum as a partner and general counsel, based in the London office. Blum will join GIP on 1 July. According to GIP He has extensive experience in representing sponsors and financial institutions in all aspects of cross-border project development and financings, as well as joint ventures and privatizations. Blum has worked on significant transactions in the U.S., Europe, the Middle East, Africa, the former Soviet Union and the Indian sub-continent. He joins from Latham & Watkins after 21 years, where he was a partner and head of the London office’s Project Development and Finance Group. “GIP is facing a wealth of opportunities in the infrastructure investment sector, across a range of asset classes including energy, transport and water, both in the OECD and in select developing countries,” said Adebayo Ogunlesi, Chairman and Managing Partner of Global Infrastructure Partners. “We are delighted that Joe will be joining us as a Partner and spearheading our Legal Counsel division. His vast experience in both developed and developing markets and the recognition he has gained across various infrastructure sectors distinguish him as a legal expert and we believe that his significant experience will be an asset for GIP and its limited partners.”

Grupo Ferrovial, the Spanish construction and infrastructure business, is a prime contender for Acciona’s airport services business, although it may face competition from global private equity firm 3i. Acciona put the airport services business up for sale last month, with reports suggesting a €250m to €400m price tag.3i has reportedly also shown interest although a spokesperson for the firm could not confirm press speculation. Ferrovial already owns Swissport, which it bought from Candover for SFr1bn in August 2005.