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L&G kicks off U.S. infrastructure push with university deal


LONDON (Reuters) - British insurer Legal & General <LGEN.L> has agreed its first infrastructure deal in the United States, investing around $100 million to help the University of California, Merced, expand its campus.

The deal is part of a roughly $660 million financing package that will see the campus more than double in size to accommodate 10,000 students and allow the university to grow its research and teaching programs, Legal & General said in a statement.

The 38-year financing - in what L&G said is the first-ever public-private partnership in the U.S. educational sector - is part of its strategy to target real asset deals that can help it meet its long-term pension liabilities.

"We ... continue to target transactions backed by economic and social infrastructure as part of Legal & General’s wider approach to real asset investments," said Charles-Henry Lecointe, senior infrastructure investment manager at Legal & General Investment Management Real Assets.

(Company corrected statement to make clear the $100 mln L&G financing is part of a $660 mln package, not a $760 mln package)

(Reporting by Simon Jessop; editing by Jon Boyle)