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Lord Hutton: Ministers must not turn LGPS into a sovereign wealth fund

Posted on 21 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

There are better ways to improve the local government pension scheme (LGPS) than merging it into one big sovereign wealth fund, according to Labour peer Lord John Hutton. He warned it is a “mistake” for ministers to look at the LGPS as a future UK sovereign wealth fund (SWF) that could boost investment in infrastructure projects.
The former Labour minister said it could be a mistake to create what would be the fifth largest pension fund in the world and said we have to “tread carefully” with fund mergers. “It’s a mistake to look at LGPS in that way as we have pension liabilities to pay out. But I do think this appetite for reform among ministers has not waned over the past few months. They’re just waiting for the opportunity to get going with it.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

GIC, CPPIB to acquire Seoul mall for S$348m

Posted on 19 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth fund GIC and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) will be acquiring the D-Cube retail mall in Seoul in a joint venture for US$263 million (S$348 million). As part of a joint venture partnership, GIC and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board will each own a 50 per cent stake in the mall next to Sindorim Station in Seoul.
In a joint media release on Monday (May 18), GIC and CPPIB said they will each own a 50 per cent stake in the mall following the acquisition from Daesung Industires. D-Cube, which was completed in 2011, is situated next to Sindorim Station, a major transportation hub connecting Seoul with Incheon and other major metropolitan cities near the capital………………………………………..Full Article: Source

POSCO to Finalize Cooperation Deal with Saudi Fund

Posted on 19 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

POSCO Co., South Korea’s largest steelmaker, likely will sign a comprehensive cooperation deal with South Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund next month that includes the sale of a stake in its construction unit, industry sources said.
POSCO was supposed to complete the deal with the Public Investment Fund (PIF) earlier last month to sell a 38 percent stake in POSCO Engineering & Construction for about US$1 billion. The process, however, has been in limbo since the prosecution launched an investigation into POSCO E&C on charges of creating a slush fund in mid-March………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Kazakhstan Privatizing Transtelecom

Posted on 19 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Around 49 percent of the shares in Transtelecom, the large Kazakh communications operating firm, have been sold as part of a new privatization program, the Samruk-Kazyna National Welfare Fund has said, according to Kazinform.
The sovereign wealth fund noted in its statement that the national railways carrier, NC Kazakhstan Temir Zholy JSC was the seller of the stake. Presently, Temir Zholy retains 51 percent of the Transtelecom shares………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatar is interested in investment in transport infrastructure, energy and agriculture

Posted on 19 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sheikh Faisal bin Saud Al Thani, Head of Business Development - Qatar Holding at Qatar Investment Authority declared interest in investment in transport infrastructure, energy and agriculture. Representatives of the Holding met with Bulgarian Prime minister Boyko Borisov and Bulgarian ministers who pay an official visit to Doha, the governmental information service announced.
During the talks Qatar state officials reaffirmed their interest in operating of Doha-Varna line. A Qatari delegation is to visit Bulgaria to examine specific opportunities for development of Varna seaport. Qatar also showed keen interest in training and experience exchange with Bulgarian specialist in the field of air traffic management………………………………………..Full Article: Source

POSCO to finalize cooperation deal with Saudi fund

Posted on 18 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

POSCO Co., South Korea’s largest steelmaker, likely will sign a comprehensive cooperation deal with South Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund next month that includes the sale of a stake in its construction unit, industry sources said Sunday.
POSCO was supposed to complete the deal with the Public Investment Fund (PIF) earlier last month to sell a 38 percent stake in POSCO Engineering & Construction for about US$1 billion………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatari fund denies purchase deal for Korean-invested Hanoi skyscraper

Posted on 18 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund, has denied reports that it would purchase a South Korean-invested skyscraper in Hanoi, which is the tallest building in Vietnam, Korea Joongang Daily reported Friday.
The US$1.05-billion Keangnam Hanoi Landmark Tower, built by Keangnam Enterprises, attracted much public attention recently after Sung Wan-jong, the former chairman of Keangnam, committed suicide amid investigations into his secret dealings with top South Korean politicians………………………………………..Full Article: Source

QIA calls plan to acquire Keangnam fake news

Posted on 18 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Bahn Joo-hyun, managing director of a New York-based real estate firm, has been caught in the allegations of shady dealings over an attempted sale of a building. The building is built and owned by Keangnam Enterprises, once chaired by businessman Sung Wan-jong who hanged himself from a tree on a mountain in April, following the allegations of dirty dealings with the Korean Government.
However, before killing himself, Sung blew the whistle on payments he made to the inner circle of President Park Geun-hye. That scandal is still unfolding. In a new twist on the Sung saga, Bahn is suspected of stringing along Keangnam and its creditors when he took charge of selling Keangnam Landmark 72, the tallest building in Viet Nam. He allegedly faked a letter from a potential buyer, the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Cofco Joins With China Wealth Fund to Create Global Grain Trader

Posted on 15 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Cofco Corp., China’s largest food company, joined forces with the country’s $650 billion sovereign wealth fund to create a global grain trading house. Cofco and China Investment Corp. set up a joint venture named Cofco International as a “platform for international agriculture investment,” the food company said Thursday in a statement. Cofco owns 80.1 percent and CIC the rest, it said, without giving financial details.
The partnership will help Cofco to integrate the trading businesses it acquired last year, when it snapped up 51 percent stakes in Noble Group Ltd.’s grain arm and the Netherlands’ Nidera BV. The acquisitions, giving Cofco large operations in Latin America and eastern Europe, will allow the state-owned company to compete with the biggest grain suppliers………………………………..Full Article: Source

British Land and GIC plan to redevelop UBS offices

Posted on 15 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

British Land and GIC, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, won approval to redevelop a building at the Broadgate office complex in the City of London financial district. The project, known as 100 Liverpool Street, was approved on Tuesday in London after a vote by the borough council. The landlords will extend and refurbish the existing building to create a new 47,840 sq m (515,000 sq ft) office property with restaurants and stores.
Half of the workspace under construction in the City of London and the adjacent technology district that includes Shoreditch has been leased in advance of completion, according to Deloitte Real Estate. The vacancy rate for office buildings in the City is now at the lowest since 2001, boosting rents by 8.3pc in the six months through March, according to broker Knight Frank………………………………..Full Article: Source

Sovereign Wealth Funds - Cure or Curse?

Posted on 15 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

What a difference one letter ’s’ makes turning cure into curse. The small addition of one letter is linguistically huge as is asking a simple question of the value of Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs), as the implications for the global economy are equally as profound.
Many financial market participants and policymakers alike (not to mention, of course, the SWF’s themselves) would consider this question to be nonsensical as their conclusion is beyond doubt; SWFs are overwhelming viewed as a positive. However, given our natural heretical intellectual leanings we instinctively recoil when something becomes so-widely accepted as true and it triggers a desire to question the prevailing wisdom………………………………..Full Article: Source

Billions in foreign money finding haven in US real estate

Posted on 14 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Blockbuster real estate deals are back and breaking records as cash from around the globe pours into U.S. office buildings, apartment complexes and other investment properties. Real estate deals surged to $129 billion during the three months through March, marking the most active start to a year since 2007, according to Real Capital. The largest was Blackstone’s $8.1 billion sale of IndCor Properties Inc., an owner of industrial buildings, to GIC Pte, Singapore’s sovereign-wealth fund.
That number is poised to grow further because the majority of sovereign wealth funds — investors such as GIC — have yet to hit their target allocations for real estate, according to Preqin Ltd., an alternative-assets research firm. Total property allocations for such funds now top $6.3 trillion, more than double the amount in 2008, London-based Preqin said in a report this month……………………………….Full Article: Source

How the QIA Deal for Claridge’s Hotel Group Came Together

Posted on 13 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Two weeks ago, a press release from Colony Capital, the Los Angeles-based real estate firm run by Thomas Barrack, ended one of the highest profile and most acrimonious property battles of recent times. Colony announced that Constellation Hotels Holding, an arm of the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA), had bought Irish investor Paddy McKillen’s 36 percent stake of the Maybourne Hotels Group, handing control to the sovereign wealth fund.
The deal represents the denouement of an epic struggle for control of three of London’s most storied hotels — Claridge’s, the Berkeley, and the Connaught — that has pitted the brothers David and Frederick Barclay, billionaire owners of the Telegraph Media Group and the Ritz Hotel in London, against McKillen and Derek Quinlan, a former tax inspector turned major property investor, both aligned with QIA………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Tunnel opens on BTK railway

Posted on 13 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

A tunnel, located between the Georgian and Turkish border, has been opened on the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway, Azerbaijani Deputy Transport Minister Musa Panahov said on May 12. “This is an important step towards the realization of the project, because construction of the tunnel was the most difficult section,” said the deputy minister.
Azerbaijan’s state oil fund SOFAZ finances the project in accordance with the Azerbaijani president’s decree ‘On the implementation of the Baku-Tbilisi-Kars project activities’ dated February 21, 2007. SOFAZ has allocated two loans totaling $775 million for the construction of the Georgian section………………………………………..Full Article: Source

GIC adopts Omego Alert

Posted on 12 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC Private Limited has adopted Omgeo Alert, the industry’s largest web-based global database for the maintenance and communication of account and standing settlement instructions (SSIs).
The fund has stated that it adopted the solution in order to deliver further improvements in post-trade operational efficiency. GIC has said that it wanted to enhance its enterprise trade lifecycle platform as part of a two-stage process. Phase one involved the importing of SSIs into Alert, with a focus on fixed income instructions, in Q3 of 2014………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Bandhan raises funds from Singapore’s GIC

Posted on 12 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Bandhan Financial Services has raised Rs 1020 crore equity from International Finance Corporation, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC and Small Industries Development Bank of India, its chairman and managing director Chandra Shekhar Ghosh told ET Monday.
GIC has invested Rs 640.87 crore while IFC has pumped in Rs 344 crore into Bandhan, India’s first microfinance lender to get an in-principle approval to set up a bank. Sidbi has invested Rs 35 crore afresh. GIC is first time investor in Bandhan while IFC’s shareholding in the company will raised from 10.9%. Ghosh did not divulge the latest shareholding structure. Sidbi is also an existing shareholder………………………………………..Full Article: Source

GIC and CPPIB join deal for Hutchison UK units

Posted on 12 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund (SWF) GIC Private Limited (GIC) and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) led the way in a co-investment worth as much as £3.1 billion (US$4.8 billion) into the UK telecom business of Hutchison Whampoa, controlled by Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing.
GIC and CPPIB agreed to each contribute £1.1 billion to invest in an entity which will be created by merging the businesses of O2 UK and Three UK, two of the country’s major mobile service providers, owned by the Hong Kong-based conglomerate. The combined business will become the number one mobile operator in the UK with nearly 33 million customers, according to a statement by CPPIB. The Canadian pension fund will end up owning an approximate 12% stake in the entity………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Raphael Arndt, CIO Future Fund on Talks About Diversification and Risk

Posted on 12 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Founded in 2006, Australia’s A$117 billion ($93.4 billion) Future Fund is designed both to bolster government finances and offset future public-sector superannuation liabilities beginning in 2020. The fund takes a so-called total portfolio approach, which encourages sector experts to share their investment ideas, which often derive from broad-based themes such as demographic shifts or changes in resource availability.
Sovereign Wealth Center’s Victoria Barbary talked with CIO Raphael Arndt about what lies ahead for Future Fund. This is the the second two part interview. The transcript has been edited for grammar, space and context………………………………………..Full Article: Source

GIC set to invest $2.2b in British telcos

Posted on 11 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC is set to invest £1.1 billion (S$2.2 billion) in British mobile phone giants O2 and Three. GIC is teaming up with four other institutional investors to acquire one-third of the two telcos - which are poised for a mega merger - in a deal worth £3.1 billion in total.
The seller is Hutchison Whampoa, controlled by Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka Shing. The other institutional investors are the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Canadian public pension fund Caisse de depot et placement du Quebec, a subsidiary of the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority and Brazilian investment bank BTG Pactual……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Singapore and Abu Dhabi wealth funds buy into O2 deal

Posted on 11 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Hutchison Whampoa, Asian billionaire Li Ka-shing’s acquisitive conglomerate, has revealed that Singapore and Abu Dhabi’s sovereign wealth funds are among investors paying up to £3.1 billion ($6bn) for a third of the Hong Kong company’s soon-to-be-enlarged British mobile operations.
The stake sale is in line with Hutchison’s strategy of using as little debt as possible to pay for acquisitions, which have accelerated this year in Europe. Earlier this year, Hutchison, already owner of British wireless company Three, said it was buying British mobile-phone operator O2 from Spain’s Telefonica for £9.25bn, plus up to £1bn later if the newly combined company meets cashflow targets. The stake sale will reduce Hutchison’s outlay by a third………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Five Investors to Share in Hutchison’s Big Mobile Deal

Posted on 11 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Two sovereign-wealth funds, two pension funds and an investment bank will put up as much as $4.7 billion. Hutchison Whampoa, Asian billionaire Li Ka-shing’s acquisitive conglomerate, said Friday that Singapore and Abu Dhabi’s sovereign-wealth funds are among investors paying up to £3.1 billion ($4.7 billion) for a third of the Hong Kong company’s soon-to-be enlarged British cellphone operations.
The stake sale is in line with Hutchison’s strategy of using as little debt as possible to pay for acquisitions, which have accelerated this year in Europe. Earlier this year, Hutchison, already owner of U.K. wireless company Three, said it was buying U.K. mobile-phone operator O2 from Spain’s Telefonica SA for £9.25 billion, plus up to £1 billion later if the newly combined company meets cash-flow targets. The stake sale will reduce Hutchison’s outlay by a third………………………………………..Full Article: Source

SWFI Trend Report: A Tale of Two Europes

Posted on 11 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth funds and large public institutional investors have chosen to invest a clear majority of their capital directly into the United Kingdom in the last twelve months from March 31, 2015. The UK takes the top position in Europe for inbound direct investment by public institutional investors, totaling US$ 28.4 billion in the Sovereign Wealth Fund Transaction Database.
Primarily looking at sovereign wealth funds for the same 12-month period, US$ 21.1 billion was invested in the UK. Specifically, sovereign funds have been drawn to institutional-quality real estate in London and other metropolitan areas. When thinking about sovereign funds investing in London properties, many professionals highlight the Qatar Investment Authority – Canary Wharf transaction. Yet, there is a property deal that didn’t receive ample coverage from financial media back in August 2014………………………………………..Full Article: Source

EU looking to Asia to spur investment fund

Posted on 08 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The European Union is seeking Asian capital for a multi-billion euro investment plan it hopes will create more than a million jobs and revive growth. Through the creation of the European Fund for Strategic Investment, presented in Hong Kong on Thursday during its first roadshow outside Europe, the EU seeks to inject 315 billion euros into a range of long-term projects from broadband infrastructure to green energy.
The plan, expected to win final approval in the European Parliament by July, is already attracting interest from sovereign wealth funds in Asia and in the Gulf, a EU official told Reuters………………………………………..Full Article: Source

GIC adopts Omgeo ALERT to boost operational efficiency

Posted on 07 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Omgeo, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Depository Trust & Clearing Corporation (DTCC) and the global standard for post-trade efficiency, announced that Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC Private Limited (GIC) has adopted Omgeo ALERTSM, the industry’s largest and most compliant web-based global database for the maintenance and communication of account and Standing Settlement Instructions (SSIs). The firm adopted the solution to deliver further improvements in post-trade operational efficiency.
GIC wanted to enhance its enterprise trade lifecycle platform as part of a two-stage process. Phase one involved the importing of SSIs into ALERT, with a focus on fixed income instructions, in the third quarter of 2014. GIC is now embarking on the second phase of that project: loading SSIs for equity trades into ALERT. This is scheduled to go live in the second quarter of 2015. (Press Release)

Abu Dhabi-Backed Falcon Sees ‘Years of Gains’ for Europe Stocks

Posted on 07 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Falcon Private Bank, the wealth manager owned by an Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund, says European stocks have “years of gains” to come as the region rolls out its stimulus plan, while the U.S. bull run is almost over.
Markets in the euro zone may take a “short pause” before the influx of liquidity from the European Central Bank’s quantitative easing program prompts increases, David Pinkerton, the Zurich-based chief investment officer for Falcon, said Wednesday in an interview at Bloomberg’s Dubai offices………………………………………..Full Article: Source

5 Risks Keeping Sovereign Wealth Funds Up at Night

Posted on 07 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sustained low prices of oil are affecting the funding input levels of commodity-based sovereign wealth funds. These current fossil fuel prices are economically squeezing countries like Russia, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela and Iran in harmful ways. Economists, pundits, energy CEOs and policymakers are trying to get a grasp on the long-term price of oil. Lao Tzu, a 6th Century BC Chinese Poet, wrote, “Those who have knowledge, don’t predict. Those who predict, don’t have knowledge.”
Commodity-based sovereign funds such as the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA) and Kuwait Investment Authority (KIA), may face increased withdrawals to fund deepening fiscal deficits, while cash infusions have shrunk for wealth funds like Norway’s Government Pension Fund Global………………………………………..Full Article: Source

GIC in talks to buy stake in Brazil’s Rede D’Or for $980 million

Posted on 06 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

GIC Pte, Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, is in talks to buy a stake worth as much as 3 billion reais ($980 million) in Brazilian medical-care provider Rede D’Or Sao Luiz SA, people with knowledge of the matter said.
GIC may acquire as much as 14 percent of the hospital operator, in equal shares from the company’s founding Moll family and Grupo BTG Pactual, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. GIC could announce a deal for the stake within a month, the people said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Raphael Arndt, CIO Future Fund on Coping with High Prices

Posted on 06 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Founded in 2006, Australia’s A$117 billion ($93.4 billion) Future Fund is designed both to bolster government finances by offsetting future public-sector superannuation liabilities from 2020. It was funded by budget surpluses and the proceeds from the privatization of Telstra, a formerly government-owned telecommunications company.
Sovereign Wealth Center’s Victoria Barbary talked with CIO Raphael Arndt about what lies ahead for Future Fund. This is the first of a two part interview. The transcript has been edited for grammar space and context………………………………………..Full Article: Source

SOFAZ to sign MoU with Italian Strategic Fund

Posted on 06 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

“Memorandum of Understanding between the State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) and Italian Strategic Fund is about to be completed”, Italian Minister of Economy and Finance Pier Carlo Padoan told APA-Economics.
According to him, the document will provide implementation of several new long-term investment projects, as well as cooperation between both Funds. The document is expected to be signed in September, 2015………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatar’s SWF announces US push

Posted on 06 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund (SWF), which manages about US$256 billion in assets, has announced that it will establish an office in the US as it increasingly seeks investment deals in the country. The Doha-based Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) said it will open an office in New York City on the back of its growing US investment portfolio, according to the Gulf state’s US ambassador, Mohammed bin Jaham Al Kuwari.
The SWF, which is heavily internationally focussed, did not give any further details on when the office would open, nor the extent of the assets it is currently managing in the US. The QIA has, however, sharpened its focus on international investments of late. In October last year, its private equity arm, Qatar Holding, agreed to purchase a 20% equity stake in Hong Kong mall operator Lifestyle International Holdings (LIH) for around US$616 million………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Malaysia Airlines begins selling off fleet

Posted on 05 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Malaysia Airline System (MAS), parent of Malaysia Airlines, is already seeing significant changes to operations and fleet, following the May 1 start date for new CEO Christoph Mueller, who is former CEO of Aer Lingus.
MAS has been deciding whether to sell or lease its six A380s for some time, as Khazanah and Mueller concentrate on pushing through what Khazanah called “a recalibration and rationalization in aggregate capacity by more than 10% … as [we focus] on more profitable domestic and regional routes.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Temasek unit, Abu Dhabi fund said to plan sale of UAE firm Dunia

Posted on 05 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Abu Dhabi fund Mubadala Development Co. and a unit of Singapore’s Temasek Holdings are among shareholders exploring the sale of U.A.E. consumer finance company Dunia, four people with knowledge of the plan said.
The shareholders, which also include Abu Dhabi-listed Waha Capital PJSC and family-owned Arenco Group, are seeking to hire a financial adviser for the sale shortly, according to the people. A full sale of Dunia may fetch about US$500 million, two of the people said, adding a formal process was yet to begin………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatar wealth fund to open New York office as US portfolio grows

Posted on 04 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Qatar Investment Authority, the Gulf Arab state’s acquisitive sovereign wealth fund, is setting up an office in New York to manage its growing portfolio in the United States, according to remarks carried by the state news agency.
The fund is one of the most active sovereign investors in the world, snapping up stakes in everything from real estate to luxury goods. It led a consortium this year to secure control of the company that owns London’s Canary Wharf financial district in a $4 billion deal………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatar Wealth Fund to Open New York Office Amid Hunt for Deals

Posted on 04 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Qatar Investment Authority, the Gulf state’s sovereign wealth fund, is setting up an office in New York as it scouts for deals in the U.S., according to the country’s state news agency. The Doha-based fund, which controls more than $100 billion in investments, will open an office in New York to manage its growing investment portfolio in the country, Mohammed bin Jaham Al Kuwari, the agency cited Qatar’s ambassador to the U.S. as saying, at a banquet where he addressed representatives of 15 American companies operating in the Gulf Arab country.
Qatar, one of the world’s richest countries, will continue spending on projects such as health, infrastructure, railways and the 2022 Football World Cup, which it is hosting, the ambassador said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

New World Sells Hotels to Abu Dhabi Venture for $2.4 Billion

Posted on 04 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

New World Development Co., controlled by the family of Hong Kong billionaire Cheng Yu-tung, said it will sell three hotels to a joint venture with Abu Dhabi Investment Authority for HK$18.5 billion ($2.4 billion).
The developer will receive HK$10 billion in cash for the sale, it said in a statement to the Hong Kong stock exchange. A unit of New World will hold 50 percent of the venture, with Abu Dhabi Investment owning the rest, it said. The hotels include the Grand Hyatt in Hong Kong………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oman fund to help finance Spanish companies abroad

Posted on 04 May 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oman’s largest sovereign wealth fund and Spain’s Compania Espanola de Financion del Desarollo have agreed to establish a fund, initially 200 million euros ($220 million) in size, to finance Spanish firms, the Omani fund said on Wednesday. The State General Reserve Fund (SGRF) said it had reached the agreement after talks between the Omani and Spanish governments. The SGRF is estimated to have assets of about $13 billion, according to the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute, which tracks the industry.
Compania Espanola de Financion del Desarollo is a state- and private-owned firm which provides financial support to private direct investment projects in foreign countries where Spain has interests………………………………………..Full Article: Source

South Korea’s sovereign-wealth fund is bidding to buy a stake in Los Angeles Dodgers

Posted on 30 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Efforts by South Korea’s sovereign-wealth fund to buy a minority stake in the Los Angeles Dodgers have helped put the Major League Baseball team’s ownership in play, said people with knowledge of the situation. “A number of organizations have expressed an interest in investing,” said a person close to the Dodgers, adding that “as of this point, none have gone beyond the point of discussion.”
The talks come at a time when private-equity practitioners and sovereign-wealth funds are increasingly interested in owning major-league sports franchises. Lucrative broadcast rights, merchandising opportunities, sponsorship revenue, and prospects to expand the teams’ presence in Asia help drive demand for such deals………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Norway Wealth Fund Has Record Gain as ECB Feeds Stock Surge

Posted on 30 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The world’s largest sovereign wealth fund gained a record 401 billion kroner ($53 billion) in the first quarter after unprecedented monetary stimulus drove up the value of its equity holdings. The 5.3 percent increase in the first three months of the year was driven by a 7.5 percent rise in its stock portfolio, the $900 billion fund said in Oslo on Wednesday. Its bonds returned 1.6 percent while real estate rose 3.1 percent.
“There were big price movements in the European market,” Yngve Slyngstad, chief executive officer of the fund, said in a statement. “After a weak return on European stocks last year, the market rallied in the first quarter.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Oman fund, Spanish firm to finance Spanish companies abroad

Posted on 30 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Oman’s largest sovereign wealth fund and Spain’s Compania Espanola de Financion del Desarollo have agreed to establish a fund, initially 200 million euros ($220 million) in size, to finance Spanish firms, the Omani fund said on Wednesday.
The State General Reserve Fund (SGRF) said it had reached the agreement after talks between the Omani and Spanish governments. The SGRF is estimated to have assets of about $13 billion, according to the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute, which tracks the industry………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Temasek raises bets on Indian pharma sector

Posted on 30 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Temasek Holdings (Pvt.) Ltd, an investment firm based in Singapore, has invested more than $600 million to buy stakes in three Indian drug makers over the past six months, raising its bets on the Indian pharmaceutical industry that has given investors among the highest returns over the past few years.
Two of these deals were in publicly traded firms—Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd and Glenmark Pharmaceuticals Ltd. The third investment was in Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd. The three transactions were ranked among the top five private equity (PE) deals in the pharmaceutical sector over the last five years, according to data from researcher VCCEdge………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Netherlands and Azerbaijan do business

Posted on 29 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The strength of Dutch–Azerbaijani relations was acknowledged during the inaugural Netherlands–Azerbaijan Business Forum on 23 April at the Maastricht School of Management (MSM), organised by MSM, The Province of Limburg, The European Azerbaijan Society (TEAS), AZPROMO and the Netherlands Council for Trade Promotion (NCH). Around 250 delegates attended the event, including more than 50 Azerbaijani business leaders drawn from all sectors of the country’s economy.
Shahmar Movsumov, CEO, State Oil Fund of the Azerbaijani Republic (SOFAZ), explained: “Natural resources can be both a blessing and curse. Azerbaijan is currently passing through its second oil boom. SOFAZ has created around $40bn of revenues, and is a global investor in all asset classes.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Sovereign Wealth Funds Spice Up Deal Activity in Asia

Posted on 28 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth funds continue to expand their reach in a variety of transactions across Asia. The Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) is competing against Goldman Sachs on the acquisition of the Keangnam Hanoi Landmark Tower. The 72-story tower is the tallest building in Hanoi and is worth an estimated US$ 1 billion. Korea-based Keangnam Enterprises, Ltd is the developer and seller of the tower.
Goldman Sachs’ offer would be assuming project-financing debt of US$ 900 million and formation of a special purpose vehicle to take over control of the tower. The QIA’s offer is to acquire the whole tower for US$ 800 million in cash. The New York office of Colliers International is the lead manager of the sale. Major companies such as KPMG, Standard Chartered and PwC have reserved space to setup offices in the tower………………………………………..Full Article: Source

GIC raises stake in Mumbai IT park Nirlon to 63.9% for $90M through open offer

Posted on 24 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC has raised its holding in public listed Mumbai IT park firm Nirlon Ltd to 63.92 per cent by acquiring more shares in the open offer for Rs 568.32 crore ($90 million). This completes a rare control-style deal for a sovereign wealth fund in India. GIC had previously struck a deal to buy up to 39.2 per cent stake in the company last December last year. This was conditional upon the acceptance ratio in the open offer.
It had made an open offer to buy 28.4 per cent stake from the public and said if it is able to garner over 21.7 per cent stake through this route, it would buy only 5 per cent stake from the promoters for Rs 100 crore besides 29 per cent stake from two institutional investors for Rs 584 crore at Rs 222 a share each………………………………….Full Article: Source

Khazanah Nasional targets EU markets, new industries for investments

Posted on 24 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign investment firm Khazanah Nasional Bhd will look into European markets, as well as “newer industries” locally to invest this year on. A new region Khazanah Nasional is looking to venture into is the UK and Europe, which it will open up a London office for by the end of this year. The firm already has four international offices in big cities like Beijing, Mumbai, Istanbul and San Francisco.
Managing director Azman Mokhtar said the firm is ready to open an office in London looking at opportunities post the currency crisis.”Previously, we didn’t think we were ready for that market but after the Eurozone crisis, we are ready to open our London office. It will be later in the year,” he said, “That loop of offices is complete for now, we don’t think we need more for the area we want to cover currently.”…………………………………Full Article: Source

Khazanah firm on its turnaround plan for MAS

Posted on 24 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Khazanah Nasional Bhd, the owner of Malaysia Airlines, is firm on its decision to reduce the number of the airline’s employees by 6,000 people, even as it gives more time to incoming chief executive officer (CEO) Christoph Mueller to choose his team. The plan to retrench more than 25% of MAS’ workers is being protested by the airline’s workers’ unions.
“We have done our part in assessing MAS staff and the new company (newco) slated to be officially established on July 1 which will only need 14,000 workers in relation to our own projection of fleet size and operation as planned………………………………….Full Article: Source

MAS job cuts needed to avoid yet another rescue, says Khazanah

Posted on 24 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The downsizing at Malaysia Airlines Bhd (MAB) cannot be avoided if the new national carrier is to be sustainable, controlling shareholder Khazanah Nasional Bhd said today amid complaints by staff unions.
According to Khazanah, MAB must trim 6,000 jobs to reach a more sustainable 14,000 headcount, but has tried its best to do the exercise properly and humanely by offering jobs elsewhere. “The point of NewCo is going to a new ship with a size and business practices that can work and be sustained,” Khazanah managing director Tan Sri Azman Mokhtar told reporters at the sidelines of Invest Malaysia 2015, using another name for MAB………………………………….Full Article: Source

What China Share Rally? Best-Performing China Fund Expects More

Posted on 24 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

China’s shares are at a seven-year high and Blackstone Group LP is warning of stock-market excess. The manager of the best-performing long-only fund investing in the nation’s equities disagrees and says there’s more to come.
Small capitalization stocks, whose prices have as much as tripled, will see a major correction “in the years ahead,” said Wong, who worked for Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC Pte from 1981 until 1985. Founded in 1995, APS serves institutional investors such as pension funds, endowments, foundations, family offices, funds of funds, and sovereign wealth funds, Wong said. More than half of the investors are based in North America, with the remainder evenly split between Asia, Europe and Australia, he said………………………………….Full Article: Source

Samruk Kazyna Plans to Open Subsidiary in Silicon Valley

Posted on 24 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Samruk Kazyna Sovereign Wealth Fund plans to establish a subsidiary in Silicon Valley, California. A working group consisting of the heads of a number of Samruk Kazyna companies, led by Chairman of the organisation Umirzak Shukeyev, visited companies of Silicon Valley on April 9-10, where they were acquainted with the work of Stanford University, Berkeley, as well as such well-known innovative companies as Tesla Motors, SolarCity and other start-up companies.
“The sides discussed the possibility of cooperation in the development of clean energy, gas chemistry, transport, medicine, agriculture, education and IT. In particular, they considered the possibility of creating Samruk Innovation, a company based in Silicon Valley,” said a Samruk Kazyna press release………………………………….Full Article: Source

Take that campaign promise to the bank — in 2020

Posted on 24 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

On Wednesday, Premier Paul Davis announced that in 2020 the government will start a “Generations Fund” — basically, a sovereign wealth fund, with a name that was probably tested in focus groups.
I’ve been asking about a sovereign wealth fund for at least four years now, and I remember then finance minister Tom Marshall always insisting that the government must first pay down the debt to a manageable level, and then put some of the oil revenue into a savings account………………………………….Full Article: Source

Norway SWF is primed to become Africa’s biggest investor

Posted on 22 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

World’s biggest Sovereign Wealth Fund (SWF), Norway’s Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG), last year added five African states to the number of countries it approves as marketplaces for trading in equities. It is keen to take advantage of the pace of economic growth across Africa to garner profitable returns on equity investments.
The Norwegian fund’s investment in Africa has now been extended to Kenya, Tunisia, Ghana, Mauritius and Nigeria. Its investments in Nigeria, as at the end of 2014 was 497 million kroner ($63 million), which included stocks in companies listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange (NSE). The fund’s investment is highest in Zenith Bank, Nigeria’s largest bank, at 23.5 percent. This is followed by another lender, Guaranty Trust Bank at 21 percent. Access Bank has so far received the least investment from the wealth fund (3.2 percent)…………………………………..Full Article: Source

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