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Temasek’s Ho Ching to spend time on ‘longstanding things’ during sabbatical

Posted on 16 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Temasek Holdings’ chief executive Ho Ching said on Wednesday she plans to “spend some time on a couple of longstanding things” which she has wanted to do during her three-month sabbatical leave.
Earlier on Wednesday, Temasek had announced that Ms Ho was taking sabbatical leave. President of Temasek, Mr Lee Theng Kiat, will cover for Ms Ho in relation to “all normal course of business at Temasek as an investor and shareholder, as an institution, and as a steward”. Temasek did not give any reasons for Ms Ho’s leave………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Govt appoints Future Fund board members

Posted on 15 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The federal government has appointed Carolyn Kay and Jane Wilson as new board members of Australia’s $100 billion sovereign wealth fund. Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said today that Ms Kay and Dr Wilson had been made members of the Future Fund Board of Guardians for the next five years.
“Both have extensive investment and board experience,” Senator Cormann said in a statement. “Their respective backgrounds will be great assets for the Future Fund board, bringing considerable financial acumen and business expertise to complement the board’s existing skills.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

New Mexico State Investment Council’s Vince Smith On Diversification

Posted on 14 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The New Mexico State Investment Council, with more than $20 billion in assets under management, is the second largest sovereign wealth vehicle in the U.S. It traces its history back to land grants in the late nineteenth century. Today it oversees four separate funds and a widely diversified asset base.
The [New Mexico State Investment] Council is still in the midst of a very large, multi-year redeployment of its assets, we’re moving from a publicly-traded portfolio — mostly equity investments — to a more diversified portfolio mix, with a large allocation to the private markets. Previously the Council had been very heavily equity-oriented; the exposure to stocks was as much as 85 percent………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China Sovereign Wealth Fund’s Private-Equity Chief Said to Leave

Posted on 08 April 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The head of the private-equity department at China’s $653 billion sovereign wealth fund has stepped down, according to a person familiar with the matter. He Linbo, also known by his English name Ludwig, was replaced at China Investment Corp. by Wang Ou, previously an official with the China Securities Regulatory Commission, said the person, who asked not to be identified because the information hasn’t been publicly released.
The private-equity department oversees real estate assets, direct investments and co-investments, according to CIC’s website. Together with the special-investments department, it manages CIC’s long-term assets, which accounted for more than 28 percent of its global portfolio as of the end of 2013, according to the latest CIC annual report………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Exclusive interview with China Investment Corp. CEO (Video)

Posted on 31 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

At the just ended Boao Forum, CCTV’s reporter Xia Cheng caught up with Ding Xuedong, chairman and CEO of China Investment Corporation. CIC is the fifth-largest country fund in the world with more than 650 billion US dollars in assets under management. Markets view the company as a window on China’s perspective on the world economic outlook, and that’s exactly where the conversation starts.……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Swiss banking model is ‘dead’, says Abu Dhabi finance chief

Posted on 31 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Abu Dhabi intends to set itself up as a new hub for wealth management, with the head of its nascent international financial centre declaring Switzerland’s old model of private bank secrecy to be “dead”.
Abu Dhabi Global Markets is an expression of world ambition, intended to elevate the oil-and-gas-rich emirate to the tables of the most influential global institutions, such as the Basel Committee on Banking Supervision and the Group of 20 Nations, using Singapore rather than Switzerland as its model, its chairman told the Financial Times………………………………………..Full Article: Source

NZ Superfund CIO Whineray on Change and Risk

Posted on 25 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

New Zealand Superannuation Fund(NZ Super) was founded in 2001 as a means to help smooth the tax burden associated with rising universal pension costs among the island nation’s generations. Later, it helped pioneer an innovative portfolio management policy to “tilt” toward better prospects within its allocation strategy. With $21.5 billion in assets under management, the fund is viewed as an exemplar of governance and investment acumen among sovereign wealth funds.
We’ve changed that quite a lot in the last few years. We were much more traditional. Five years ago we would allocate $50 million and hope that we’d get it back plus a little bit more in 10 or 12 years. Then we changed our focus to becoming a little more opportunity-driven, we want to be able to change the amount of risk we’re allocating to an opportunity if that opportunity changes………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Qatar has big investment plans for India

Posted on 25 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, told TOI on the eve of his summit with Narendra Modi - the Prime Minister’s first with a leader of the Arab world - that his energy-rich country wanted to invest big in India. “I know that the new government is taking a number of initiatives, especially in business and investment, which is very interesting and encouraging from our point of view. We trust the Indian economy. So we will invest in India.”
Through the Qatar Investment Authority, he holds significant stakes in such blue-chip corporations as Harrods, Barclays and Sainsbury; he also owns the famed Paris Saint-Germaine Football Club, and controversially won the right to host the 2022 football World Cup………………………………………..Full Article: Source

GIC: Investors Should Unite Against Short Termism

Posted on 24 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The CIO of one of the world’s largest asset pools has called on fellow institutional investors to help persuade asset managers of the benefit of extending their horizons. In a paper published last week, GIC CIO Lim Chow Kiat said one of the major issues hampering the multi-billion dollar fund was many asset managers’ focus on short-term liquidity and performance. This stance, he said, was not being challenged enough by many of the world’s largest investors.
“The minimum time horizon for performance measurement is five years,” said Lim. “In addition, we work hard to prepare expectations for potential return paths. This is to avoid surprises and allow our investors to act in a long-term manner.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

GIC chief laments investors’ short-term perspective

Posted on 23 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Asset owners could work together to forge a greater focus on long-term investments, according to the CIO for the Government of Singapore Investment Corporation (GIC). In a new research paper, the sovereign wealth fund’s chief investment officer said he was keen for long-term partnerships with external managers.
However, he expressed concern that other investors’ time horizon did not match GIC’s. Lim Chow Kiat, group CIO for GIC, said that the sovereign investor was limited in the number of truly long-term investments it can make by other investors’ and external managers short-term horizons………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Future Fund Names Infrastructure Chief

Posted on 23 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Australia’s sovereign wealth fund has promoted an internal candidate to lead its growing infrastructure and timberland portfolio. Wendy Norris, who joined the Future Fund in 2010, has replaced Raphael Arndt at the helm of the $8 billion portfolio, the institution has announced. Arndt was promoted to CIO in September last year.
“[Wendy] combines infrastructure portfolio management, asset management and transaction expertise with the ability to contribute to investment thinking across all asset classes,” said Arndt, who was tasked with creating an infrastructure portfolio when the fund was launched in 2008. He also thanked Barry Brakey, the fund’s head of property, who had been looking after that section of the portfolio while a replacement was found………………………………………..Full Article: Source

NZ Super underlines long-term views amid criticism

Posted on 20 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The chief executive of the New Zealand Superannuation Fund, Adrian Orr, has reiterated his ‘unshakeable belief’ in taking a long-term view for investment. It comes after - although not in response to - media criticism of losses the fund suffered in a loan investment to a Portuguese bank.
The NZ$27 billion ($20.1 billion) fund, which late last year won one of AsianInvestor inaugural awards for institutional excellence in the field of governance, has been under fire at home for an unusual blemish on its record of investing, which it reported on February 19. NZ Super is widely recognised for having one of the most robust and respected investment processes among sovereign funds in Asia Pacific, with a reference portfolio for low-cost passive global exposure and a risk-allocation process for active investment decision-making………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Imagining the world of Tony Blair, Middle East peace envoy

Posted on 19 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Arab street was in uproar at the shock news of the departure of its favourite peace envoy. Young men and women, holding pictures of Tony Blair, marched through Arab capitals demanding his return. A #bringbackTony Twitter campaign rapidly gathered momentum.
The Blair business acumen has also been appreciated. Kuwait and an Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund have been clients of his firm. Admiration for Mr Blair was enhanced in the aftermath of the Arab spring, when some leaders in the region felt abandoned by a western world that embraced democracy even if it benefited Islamists………………………………………..Full Article: Source

We do not pay foreigners for nothing: Samruk Kazyna CEO

Posted on 11 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Chief Executive Officer of Samruk Kazyna National Welfare Fund Umirzak Shukeyev has spoken about the wages of the foreigners employed at the Fund, Tengrinews reports. Samruk-Kazyna National Wealth Fund is a sovereign wealth fund and joint stock company in Kazakhstan which owns, either in whole or in part, many important companies in the country, including the national rail and postal service, the state oil and gas company KazMunayGas, the state uranium company Kazatomprom, Air Astana airlines, and numerous financial groups.
The state is the sole shareholder of the fund that controls $78 billion in assets, which is more than 50% of the country’s GDP. Kazakhstan’s government expects the assets held by its sovereign wealth fund to reach $100 billion in 2015………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Of Najib, 1MDB & the DISAPPEARANCE of Malaysia’s public funds

Posted on 02 March 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The statements given by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) chairman Tan Sri Lodin Wok Kamaruddin pertaining to the funding and the status of the 1MDB, and whether it involves public funds or not, are rather confusing for the people to grasp.
While Najib stated that, “I wish to stress here that 1MDB is a strategic investment fund owned by the Malaysian government and I will not allow anyone to use or misappropriate public funds for personal interest or gain,”… in the official 1MDB website Lodin wrote,”… whereas a sovereign wealth fund is directly funded by the government and invests on its behalf, 1MDB raises and invests its own capital………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Singapore Temasek says welcomes StanChart new CEO

Posted on 27 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings has welcomed the appointment of Bill Winters as Standard Chartered’s new chief executive. “We take this opportunity to welcome Bill Winters as the next CEO of Standard Chartered, to build on and grow its excellent franchise,” Temasek said in a statement.
“He brings with him considerable experience as well as an excellent reputation for building good teams.” “This on-going process for board renewal must continue as the requirements and challenges facing the banking and financial sector across the world have become much more complex and onerous,” Temasek added………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Australian sovereign wealth funds executive joins Hedge Fund Standards Board

Posted on 26 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

David George, Head of Debt & Alternatives at the Future Fund, Australia’s sovereign wealth fund, has joined the board of the Hedge Fund Standards Board (HFSB). This appointment emphasises the important role of sovereign wealth funds in promoting better practices in the hedge fund industry, particularly in Asia Pacific.
Dame Amelia Fawcett, Chairman of the HFSB, said: “We are thrilled to welcome our new Australian member to the board. It sends another powerful signal about the global importance of the HFSB mission for the investor community worldwide and particularly in Asia Pacific.” David George said: “I am very pleased to join the Board. The HFSB is an important platform for promoting better industry practice to the benefit of end investors, managers and policymakers. I look forward to working with the other Trustees and to progressing this effort.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Jonathan Still The Best Man To rule Nigeria – Ex-Gov Obi

Posted on 23 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Nigerians have been urged to give another four years to President Goodluck Jonathan because he is head and shoulder above his All Progressives Congress, (APC) rival, Major General Muhammadu Buhari. Former Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, who is also the Deputy Chairman of the Jonathan/ Sambo Campaign Organisation, made the appeal.
Citing the establishment of the Sovereign Wealth Fund, (SWF), as one notable example, Obi said that when the country had the Excess Crude Account, there were always agitations from everyone, including governors, that the money should be shared. But, “Jonathan’s government had moved from Excess Crude Account to Sovereign Wealth Fund. With the former, governors, and everybody, all of us would go to Abuja and say, ‘let’s share it’, but you can’t share the Sovereign Wealth Fund. It is managed internationally. It’s there for everybody and everybody can see it”………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Where is Christy Clark’s plan now to save some revenue from B.C.’s rich resources?

Posted on 23 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

In the run-up to the 2013 election, Premier Christy Clark was dreaming big about sky-high LNG revenues, and a soon-to-be established Prosperity Fund to share today’s revenue from the non-renewable resource with tomorrow’s citizens. Does this mean the idea of some kind of sovereign wealth fund is, like much of Clark’s projected revenue stream, dead in the water?
Of course a sovereign wealth fund is more than just a pot of money that sits and grows and is never spent. The authors note that other jurisdictions put earnings from the savings to such uses as stabilizing government revenues over time, funding infrastructure and even maintaining healthy pension funds………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB director Ong is business partner of Jho Low’s father

Posted on 17 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) non-executive director Tan Sri Ong Gim Huat is not just a friend, but also a business partner of 30 years of Tan Sri Larry Low Hock Peng. L‎ow is the father of Jho Low or Low Taek Jho, who is said to have influence over the operations of debt-laden 1MDB, the controversial sovereign wealth fund owned by the Ministry of Finance.
Companies Commission of Malaysia (CCM) documents show that Ong and Low are directors and shareholders of Wonder Bay Sdn Bhd, a Penang based property development company………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Middle Eastern sovereign wealth money still flowing, despite oil woes

Posted on 12 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Carlyle Group’s David Rubenstein says that Middle Eastern sovereign wealth funds are making larger investments than ever before. Co-CEO David Rubenstein said during an analyst call that there has been a marked increase in commitments from sovereign wealth funds, including from Middle Eastern governments that are under fiscal pressure due to falling oil prices. Same goes for commitments from many Asian sovereign wealth funds that are facing domestic economic headwinds.
“The large sovereign wealth funds are now coming into the market… and making very very large commitments, larger than we’ve ever seen before” he said. “And I don’t think there is likely to be a diminution in that trend this year despite the fact that you may say, for example, “In the Middle East, because oil prices are down, won’t the sovereign wealth funds there be pulling back?’……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Carlyle Group sees rise of sovereign wealth fund investment, decline in pensions

Posted on 12 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Sovereign wealth funds are “a gigantic source of new investment” that are elbowing aside public pension funds in the private equity space, Carlyle Group co-CEO David Rubenstein said Wednesday. Such state-controlled funds increased to 37 percent of capital commitments at Carlyle last year, up from 17 percent a year earlier, Rubenstein said.
“I suspect that will continue. At the same time public pension funds are going down, relatively speaking. It was 28 percent; now it’s about 18 percent,” Rubenstein said during an investor conference call to announce the District-based firm’s 2014 financial results………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Oilman becomes milkman as Norway’s best jobs disappear

Posted on 11 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Norway’s oil industry, so rich it spawned the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, is struggling as oil prices plunge. When Joergen Langaunet started as a project planner at offshore engineer Aker Solutions ASA in 2012, he worked a lot of overtime.
Norway’s oil industry, so rich it spawned the world’s largest sovereign wealth fund, was booming. Then last year, he realised he was spending most of his time in the lunch room: His services weren’t needed. In September, as crude prices were on their way to the biggest plunge since 2008, Langaunet lost his job. Today he’s a regional manager for Tine SA, Norway’s biggest dairy producer………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Disgraceful for M’sia that Najib’s 1MDB has to ‘beg’ RM2 bil from Ananda to repay overdue loan

Posted on 02 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

It is a complete embarrassment for the Malaysian Government that 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) had to stoop to begging a loan from billionaire Ananda Krishnan to repay an overdue RM2 billion debt.
Yesterday, it was reported by both Reuters and The Edge Financial Daily that businessman Tan Sri Ananda Krishnan is understood to have firmed up an agreement to loan beleaguered 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) as much as RM2 billion to help the strategic investment fund settle a debt obligation to Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) and RHB Bank Bhd due at the end of this month. ……………………………………….Full Article: Source

What does AK want in return?

Posted on 02 February 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Treasury must come clean and make public all the terms behind Ananda Krishnan’s RM2bn rescue of the government investment company 1Malaysia Development Bhd, the DAP’s publicity secretary Tony Pua, said.
He said it was “a complete embarrassment” for the government that 1MDB “had to stoop to begging a loan” from billionaire Ananda Krishnan to repay 1MDB’s overdue RM2 billion debt to Malayan Banking and RHB Bank. Ananda Krishnan (AK) sold his power-generatIng group Tanjung Energy to 1MDB, which paid him through a two-part loan totalling RM5.5bn, the Edge has previously reported. It said there were no problems with the first part, a RM3.5bn 10-year loan. ……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Ananda Krishnan to lend 1MDB up to RM2 billion to settle debts

Posted on 30 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Businessman T. Ananda Krishnan (AK) is understood to have firmed up an agreement to loan beleaguered 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) as much as RM2 billion to help the strategic investment fund settle a debt obligation to Malayan Banking Bhd (Maybank) and RHB Bank Bhd due at the end of this month, sources say.
It is understood that the loan, however, is merely an interim measure. “It (the loan) is more for 1MDB to clear this obstacle – the two banks – than anything else. The two (AK and 1MDB) are still looking at how to resolve the issue,” the source said……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Najib duping Malaysians over 1MDB, says DAP

Posted on 23 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

DAP today said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak was insulting the intelligence of Malaysians with his “incredulous” claims about 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). Its national publicity chief Tony Pua questioned Najib’s justification that Putrajaya had only committed RM1 million to the controversial sovereign fund.
“While it is technically true that the government only invested RM1 million in cash to the company, Najib who is also the finance minister failed to highlight that it also explicitly guaranteed RM5.8 billion of loans as well as issued another ‘letter of support’ which, for all intents and purposes, guaranteed another US$3 billion (RM10.8 billion) of borrowings………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Korean Sovereign Fund to Double Alternative Assets (Video)

Posted on 22 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Korea Investment Corp., South Korea’s $85 billion sovereign wealth fund, plans to more than double its allocation to alternative investments by the end of 2015, said Chairman and Chief Executive Hongchul Ahn.……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Former Treasurer Peter Costello a no-show at Future Fund’s ‘five star booze up’

Posted on 19 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Peter Costello’s Future Fund has invested $11,000 in a “five star booze up’’ to ensure 96 highly paid staff celebrated Christmas in style. But the former Treasurer, who established the scheme in 2004 and is now paid $200,000 a year for a part-time gig as chairman, failed to turn up leaving staff to enjoy the party pies and rice balls.
The Future Fund, which has more than $114 billion under management, is an independently managed sovereign wealth fund. It was originally designed to help government’s meet the future superannuation liabilities for retired public servants. It has now expanded to help fund other policies including the National Disability Insurance Scheme………………………………………..Full Article: Source

CIC private equity exec joins Ontario Teachers

Posted on 16 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Another China Investment Corp (CIC) private equity veteran has moved into the private sector. Olivia Ouyang, a former private equity executive at CIC, has joined the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan in Hong Kong as director of funds and co-investments, according to Ontario Teachers’ website and a person with knowledge of the situation.
Ouyang joined Ontario Teachers’ in December, said Deborah Allan, a spokeswoman for the Canadian pension system. Ouyang previously handled PE fund commitments, co-investments and direct investments in Europe and emerging markets for CIC, which she joined in 2010. Prior to CIC, she worked as a private equity investment officer at the International Finance Corp………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Former Facebook Veteran Leads Sovereign Wealth Backed Venture Capital

Posted on 16 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Former Facebook executive Jonathan Heiliger is back in the venture capital game, several months after stepping down as a Silicon Valley-based partner with North Bridge Venture Partners. Heiliger, who was known as Facebook’s “cloud fixer,” has teamed up with In Sik Rhee (ex-Rembrandt Venture Partners) to launch a U.S. affiliate of Vertex Ventures, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Singaporean sovereign wealth fund Temasek Holdings.
According to a regulatory filing, Vertex Ventures U.S. already has secured $107.5 million from three investors (of which Temasek is likely one), and word is that more is on the way. The investment strategy will be to focus on enterprise apps and web infrastructure, with plenty of capital left over for the large follow-on deals that such companies often require………………………………………..Full Article: Source

EIG hires exec from CIC to run Hong Kong office

Posted on 12 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

EIG Global Energy Partners tapped China’s massive sovereign wealth fund for talent to run its debut office in Asia. Yangyang Liu, a former private equity official with China Investment Corp (CIC), joined EIG Global Energy Partners in September, according to her LinkedIn profile and EIG’s website. Liu joined to lead EIG’s Hong Kong office, the website said.
EIG announced the opening of the new office in 2012, but didn’t say who would lead it. At the time, EIG said two investment professionals relocated to Hong Kong from the firm’s Washington, D.C. headquarters to work in the office………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB’s critics politically driven, don’t know full facts, says new chief

Posted on 12 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The string of attacks against controversial 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) is politically driven and has no “grounding in reality”, said its newly minted group executive director Arul Kanda, as he prepares to steer the debt-ridden strategic development firm through a review this year.
The seasoned investment banker said it was “quite clear” most of the allegations directed at the company had been driven more by “political rather than genuine business considerations”, he told The Malaysian Insider in an email interview………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Herculean task for new boss to revive 1MDB

Posted on 08 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

First, 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) shouldn’t have been set up in the first place, as there are already too many of such government investment funds in this country. Second, 1MDB has gone in the opposite direction of its professed mission - not momentarily but consistently throughout its existence. This indicates that the motivating force of 1MDB is beyond the reach of its CEO, who has been changed frequently.
Third, judging from the many negative reports and the many irrational major moves it has made, as well as its own audited reports, this body is stricken with pervasive mega corruption in addition to gross mismanagement………………………………………..Full Article: Source

FG Says Jonathan Did Not Squander Foreign Reserves, ECA

Posted on 08 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The Federal Government has faulted increasing allegations in some quarters that the administration of President Goodluck Jonathan has squandered the nation’s foreign reserves and Excess Crude Account (ECA), describing such positions as absolutely untrue.
It said from verifiable facts, it was clear that Nigeria’s reserves were not squandered but used appropriately in the course of normal transactions required for the development of the Nigerian economy. Allegations that the Jonathan administration has frittered away the reserves and the ECA have been rife by opposition party members and former President Olusegun Obasanjo, among other critics, particularly since the prices of oil began a precipitous journey south………………………………………..Full Article: Source

China Investment Corp. Public-Equity Head Zheng Said to Leave

Posted on 07 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Zheng Kongdong, head of a China Investment Corp. department that specializes in publicly traded stocks, has left the nation’s $653 billion sovereign wealth fund, said three people with knowledge of the matter.
Zheng resigned from CIC last year to pursue other career opportunities, said one of the people who asked not to be identified as the information is private. Larry Zhang has been acting head of the department since Zheng’s departure was announced internally, the three people said………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Malaysian state investor 1MDB hires new chief as $3 bln IPO looms

Posted on 07 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Debt-ridden state fund 1 Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) said on Monday that it had hired an Abu Dhabi-based Malaysian investment banker as its new President and group executive director, who will embark on a review of the firm’s business.
Arul Kanda succeeds 1MDB’s chief executive officer Mohd Hazem Abdul Rahman, who departs less than two years after his appointment in March 2013 amid criticism for leading the company into further debt. Kanda, who starts at 1MDB immediately, said his priority will be to review the fund’s operations………………………………………..Full Article: Source

I met Najib over 1MDB, says Khairuddin

Posted on 07 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Batu Kawan Umno vice-chairman Khairuddin Abu Hassan had a private meeting with Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak over the 1MDB issue a week before the latter left for the United States for his recent meeting with President Barack Obama.
Khairuddin disclosed this today after giving a statement at the Bukit Aman police station. He said he told the Prime Minister to explain to the public what was going on with 1MDB and that he might withdraw his police report about the sovereign fund if Najib’s public statement satisfied him………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB responsible borrower and never defaulted, says new chief

Posted on 07 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Just a day after being appointed president and group executive director of 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), Arul Kanda Kandasamy has had to come out in defence of the strategic investor over its inability to service its debts. “As far as the banking sector and the credit sector is concerned, we are responsible borrowers and the company has never defaulted,” Arul Kanda Kandasamy told Bloomberg today.
“We need to manage the use of our cash in the most efficient way for the company,” he added. Though not directly addressing a report by The Edge Financial Daily today, Arul seemed to downplay on the concerns highlighted in the report over 1MDB’s failure to repay a loan of about RM2 billion last month………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB CEO’s ‘sacking’ tip of the proverbial iceberg

Posted on 06 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The sudden resignation of the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) CEO, Mohd Hazem Abdul Rahman, and the appointment of Abu Dhabi-based Malaysian banker Arul Kanda Kandasamy as executive president and executive director proves that all is not well with the sovereign wealth fund behind the steely façade presented by both the company as well as Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak, according to Petaling Jaya Utara MP Tony Pua in a statement.
“1MDB Chairman Lodin Wok Kamaruddin‘s statement on the executive change at the very top clearly indicates that Mohd Hazem has been fired. “He was either doing a terrible job or he has become the fall guy for the 100 per cent Ministry of Finance owned company which has accumulated a staggering RM42 billion in debt.”……………………………………….Full Article: Source

Abu Dhabi-based banker heads troubled 1MDB

Posted on 06 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Abu Dhabi-based Malaysian banker Arul Kanda Kandasamy, according to a release, takes over on Monday as group president and executive director of the troubled 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB), a sovereign wealth fund, from Chief Executive Mohd Hazem Abdul Rahman who was appointed to the post in August 2012.
Arul, 38, has been with Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank since July 2008 as executive vice-president, head of Investment Banking Group and head of Corporate Finance Division. He was non-independent non-executive director of Malaysia’s RHB Investment Bank Bhd from July 2009 to May 10, 2011, and director of RHB Islamic Bank Bhd and non-independent non-executive director at RHB Capital Bhd from July 20, 2009 to May 10, 2011………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Excess Crude Account: Obasanjo Questions Use Of $35bn

Posted on 06 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Former president, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, has again hit out at President Goodluck Jonathan, saying if his administration desires to bring change to the country, then it must start with itself at the top.
Obasanjo, who made this statement yesterday when he received the leadership of women in the South West, led by the Iyalode of Yorubaland, Mrs Alaba Lawson, at his hilltop residence in Abeokuta, also noted that under the present administration, funds in the external reserves and excess crude accounts had been depleted from the $35 billion that his administration left behind after his tenure. The former president has consistently scored Jonathan’s administration low, especially in the fight against corruption and impunity………………………………………..Full Article: Source

‘We have reached the danger point,’ Prince Alwaleed says of Saudi budget

Posted on 05 January 2015 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Saudi billionaire businessman Prince Alwaleed bin Talal has again publicly criticised the kingdom’s fiscal policy after the government’s 2015 budget showed its largest ever deficit due to the slump in oil prices. “We have reached the danger point… after starting to withdraw from the reserves,” Prince Alwaleed said.
Prince Alwaleed, who has called for the kingdom to create a sovereign wealth fund and warned that its reliance on oil was “wrong and dangerous”, estimated a total of $53 billion would be withdrawn from fiscal reserves during 2014 and 2015 because the government failed to contain spending………………………………………Full Article: Source

Najib met Dr Mahathir over 1MDB, say sources

Posted on 23 December 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Datuk Seri Najib Razak has met Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to discuss the former PM’s criticisms of national strategic investor 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB), say sources. The prime minister met Dr Mahathir on Saturday but details of the meeting have not been revealed.
“It was cordial. The PM is satisfied with the meeting,” a source told The Malaysian Insider. The meeting comes after the country’s longest serving prime minister had repeatedly raised questions about the heavy debt and usage of funds at 1MDB in his blog and had complained about its operations via his blog as well as at various media conferences………………………………………..Full Article: Source

We’re sorry, Jentayu Danaraksa tells Khazanah Nasional

Posted on 19 December 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Jentayu Danaraksa Sdn Bhd (JD) today expressed its profound regret over events that have transpired since the company’s media briefing on Dec 15. “We sincerely hope we have the opportunity to share, elaborate and explain in greater detail our proposal to Khazanah Nasional Bhd and apologise if we have caused any inconvenience,” JD said in a statement.
On Tuesday, JD said its meeting with Khazanah over the former’s proposal to buy Penerbangan Malaysia Bhd (PMB) and turn it into a global aircraft leasing firm had been called off………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Ahmad Maslan: 1MDB should engage more with the public

Posted on 19 December 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The management of state investment fund 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) should increase public engagement to be more transparent and avoid any unclear accusations against the company, said Deputy Finance Minister I Datuk Ahmad Maslan.
He was responding to a question on Batu Kawan Umno division vice-head Datuk Seri Paduka Khairuddin Abu Hassan’s move to lodge a police report against 1MDB and its subsidiaries on Dec 12. In the report, the Penang Umno leader had urged the police to conduct a thorough and objective investigation into the “dubious” and “suspicious” nature of the company’s financial transactions and decisions………………………………………..Full Article: Source

1MDB should clear the air, says Ahmad Maslan

Posted on 19 December 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Putrajaya today urged the top management of embattled 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) to face the public and clear the air over the company’s finances, theedgemarkets.com reported.
Deputy Finance Minister Datuk Ahmad Maslan said 1MDB has to clearly explain the dynamics of its operations and financials to the public, as it involves taxpayers’ money. Ahmad said this when asked about the police report against 1MDB by Batu Kawan Umno division deputy chief, Datuk Paduka Khairuddin Abu Hassan, last Friday………………………………………..Full Article: Source

Ex-Wall Street executive founds community for sovereign women

Posted on 18 December 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

The founder of a new women-focused organization explains its rationale and goals to Opalesque. Sefi Shliselberg worked on Wall Street, at Moody’s and Deutsche, for many years and got to meet many people from the sovereign financial sector; she realized that the few women working there did not know each other, and there were no networking associations in place for them. So she founded Women in Sovereign Entities (WSE), the first women-focused organization for the sovereign financial sector, in 2011.
She recently explained on Opalesque TV that the “sovereign financial sector” includes organizations such as central banks, ministries of finance, sovereign wealth funds, public pension funds, development banks and multilateral financial institutions………………………………………Full Article: Source

Jentayu laments Khazanah cancelling meeting to discuss MAS takeover

Posted on 17 December 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Jentayu Danaraksa Sdn Bhd is disappointed with the sudden cancellation of its meeting with Khazanah Nasional Berhad to discuss its RM8.75 billion plan to save ailing Malaysia Airlines (MAS).
Confirming The Malaysian Insider report on the indefinite postponement of its meeting with the state sovereign fund this afternoon, Jentayu managing director Feriz Omar said they were surprised with this latest development. “At the request of Khazanah, our meeting with them has been cancelled. We are disappointed because we were not given the chance to brief them thoroughly on our proposed plan…………………………………..Full Article: Source

Julie Bishop urging PNG to establish a sovereign wealth fund

Posted on 15 December 2014 by VRS  |  Email |Print

Julie Bishop is in Papua New Guinea urging its government to establish a sovereign wealth fund to ensure the whole nation benefits from its natural gas boom. Ms Bishop flew to PNG yesterday with Immigration Minister Scott Morrison, Defence Minister David Johnston and Justice Minister Michael Keenan for talks that will also focus on defence and policing co-operation, the resettlement of asylum-­seekers and help for PNG in providing security when it hosts the 2018 APEC summit.
PNG is also looking for ways to strengthen its public service through improved education and training. Bishop told the Sky News Australian Agenda program yesterday that PNG was going through an energy renaissance, with a huge natural gas project about to come online………………………………………..Full Article: Source

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