SWFI First Read, April 1, 2019

Posted on 04/01/2019


Japan to Enter the Reiwa Period

Japan’s current era known as Heisei will end in a month, along with Japanese Emperor Akihito’s historic abdication. Japan revealed the new name for the new imperial era that is set to start on May 1, 2019 as “Reiwa”. Reiwa is composed of two characters – Rei and Wa – meaning “order”, and “peace” or “harmony”.

Tight Elections in Turkey, AK Party Wins Majority, but Loses Capital Race

Across Turkey, the country’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s AK Party won more than 51% of the vote in the municipal elections. However, the secularist Republican People’s Party (CHP) candidate Mansur Yavas won to be Mayor of Ankara defeating the incumbent party – the AK Party – or Justice and Development Party. The major competing parties are the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party, the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), Good (IYI) Party, and Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP).

Mitsui Secures Funding for IHH Healthcare Deal

The Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) and commercial banks signed a US$ 1.051 billion loan for Mitsui & Co.’s purchase of a stake in Malaysia’s IHH Healthcare Berhad. JBIC will contribute up to US$ 400 million in financing. In November 2018, Mitsui agreed to pay US$ 2 billion to become the largest shareholder in IHH Healthcare. IHH Healthcare was a major holding for Khazanah Nasional Berhad.

Blackouts in Venezuela as Political Crisis Escalates

Venezuela’s President Nicolás Maduro proclaimed a 30-day electricity ration plan. Venezuela is facing power cuts across the country.

Carta Seeks More Capital

Palo Alto-based eShares, Inc. renamed themselves to be Carta, Inc. Carta sells software to help manage capitalization tables (cap tables) and other valuation software. The company was founded in 2012 by Henry Ward and Manu Kumar. Essentially eShares digitizes paper stock certificates and other items. Andreessen Horowitz is in talks to lead a US$ 300 million funding round in Carta.