COMEBACK: Goldman Sachs Tops SWFI Financial Advisory League Table for H1 2016
Sovereign wealth funds are significant actors when it comes to the world of direct investing. Since the 2000s, the number of wealth funds has blossomed. However, over the past year, there has been a recognizable slowdown in the dollar amount of cross-border SWF investment as deal making activity considerably subsided. For the first half of 2016, wealth funds and other public pension investors invested US$ 73.2 billion directly, according to data from the Sovereign Wealth Fund Transaction Database. This is a sharp decline from the US$ 126.7 directly invested in the first half of 2015.
A number of observations are that more wealth funds have been allocating toward alternative investment vehicles such as real estate funds, credit funds and infrastructure funds. Second, there has been some pull back in direct listed equity investing. Third, there were gaps between buyer and seller valuations in industries such as financials. For example, TPG’s bid to acquire ICICI Home Finance was delayed because ICICI Bank demanded a higher valuation. TPG ended up agreeing to a price, then reached out to some wealth funds to help back the deal. Lastly, wealth funds alone in the first half of 2016 invested US$ 37.1 billion directly versus US$ 67 billion from the first half of 2015.
For the first semester of 2016, the top financial advisor was Goldman Sachs. Goldman Sachs rose from fifth, in the second half of 2015, to first in the current half-year period. Goldman Sachs was ranked #1 for the first half of 2015. Vacating their former top spot which they occupied in the second half of 2015, is Eastdil Secured.
For the first half of 2016, the top legal advisor for public fund transactions was Linklaters tied with Herbert Smith Freehills.
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Source: SWFI – Sovereign Wealth Fund Transaction Database – www.swftransaction.com, July 6, 2016
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