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ADIA Sues Petrobras Thanks to Operation Car Wash Results

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Increasingly, sovereign funds are asserting their shareholder rights over listed corporations when it comes to possible material misstatements by firm management, which can drastically impact the value of a company security. Petroleo Brasileiro S.A. (Petrobras), Brazil’s gigantic state-owned oil giant, has been embroiled in a widespread political scandal that brought down the country’s first female president. A while back, Brazilian Federal Police conducted “Lava Jato Operation”, also known as Operation Car Wash, to take down the kickback schemes linking contractors to large companies to Brazilian politicians. The Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA) is major institutional investor in emerging markets like Brazil and Petrobras is one of the largest companies operating in Brazil.

On March 10, 2017, ADIA took legal action against Petrobras and Petrobras Global Finance B.V., the company’s Netherlands subsidiary that functions as a vehicle to raise funds for Petrobras through issuing debt securities in the international capital markets. The law firm Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP is representing ADIA in the lawsuit that was filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York.

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Like its U.S. Peers, Legg Mason Seeks to Trim Costs

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Legg Mason Inc., a Baltimore-based asset manager, has announced a reduction in workforce as is prepares to streamline operations and save money. Legg Mason’s leadership commented that assets under management fell 5 % year-on-year. Legg Mason currently manages US$ 727.2 billion (as of December 31, 2018), which is down from the previous US$ 767.2 billion. CEO Joseph A. Sullivan noted that a global operating platform will centralize fund administration, IT, and other departments that work with affiliates. Sullivan did not discuss the number of layoffs expected, or specify which areas would be impacted. Legg Mason disclosed they planned to close a quarter of its exchange-traded funds in March 2019. These three ETFs include a U.S. strategy, emerging markets, and a developed markets strategy outside the U.S. However, these funds run around US$ 28 million in assets under management.

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Monetary Authority of Singapore Establishes Corporate Governance Advisory Committee

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On February 12, 2019, the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) revealed the creation of a Corporate Governance Advisory Committee (CGAC). CGAC was formed to advocate for good corporate governance practices among listed companies in Singapore. Bobby Chin, Director of Singapore Telecommunications Limited, will be the Chair of CGAC. According to a MAS press release, “CGAC will identify current and potential risks to the quality of corporate governance in Singapore.”

MAS formed the Corporate Governance Council (Council) in February 2017. The Council was dissolved after it pushed out a publication of its final recommendations on August 6, 2018.

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Mubadala and SAMI Forge Ties to Explore Areas of Collaboration

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Mubadala Investment Company and Saudi Arabia Military Industries Company (SAMI), which is a defence company owned by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), agreed to a deal to partner and co-invest in defense manufacturing. This partnership grows defence ties between Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.[ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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