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COMPETITION: Sovereign Wealth Funds Spice Up Deal Activity in Asia

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sovereign wealth fund center asia

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. The tower includes an InterContinental hotel.

Temasek Eyes Postal Savings Bank of China

BNP Paribas, UBS and Temasek Holdings are among a selection of institutional investor bidders attempting to acquire up to a 10% stake in Chinese state-owned Postal Savings Bank of China (PSBC) for at least US$ 3 billion. PSBC is China’s largest bank in terms of outlets (around 40,000 branches), not in assets. The bank is preparing its initial public offering (IPO) for 2016, looking to raise US$ 25 billion. The Government of China would be open to selling a larger stake and is keen on selling to strategic investors versus typical commercial investors.

China International Capital Corporation (CICC) and Morgan Stanley are arranging the pre-IPO sale.

Sovereign Wealth Funds Makes Dough on Chinese Bank Investments

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JPMorgan Sells Stake in Saudi Investment Bank

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JPMorgan Chase & Co. is one of the largest foreign banks in Saudi Arabia. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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What Will BlackRock Look Like in 2030?

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Will BlackRock, currently the world’s biggest asset manager, be around in 10 years, or be overtaken in the exchange-traded fund market by tech companies like Amazon or Alibaba? Amazon is already in the online lending game. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos once said, “Your margin is my opportunity.” Will Laurence “Larry” Fink still be CEO or at least Chairman of BlackRock? A lot can happen. BlackRock’s Aladdin is rubbing the lamp, calling on a genie to make its third final wish.

Over the past decade, BlackRock and the élite asset management community benefitted handsomely from central bank measures such as quantitative easing, with the rapid creation of money flowing into listed equity markets. At the end of 2017, BlackRock topped US$ 6.29 trillion in assets under management, rivaling nearly the size of the whole sovereign wealth fund market. Can BlackRock get any bigger or at least reach US$ 10 trillion in assets by 2030? This open-ended question can be answered in many ways, but factors such as market access to China, India and Southeast Asia will be crucial for BlackRock. In fact, SWFI research sees the Asia-Pacific region growing faster than the global AUM rates. BlackRock could be missing out on China, as players like Ant Financial offers products such as Yu’e Bao (Chinese for leftover treasure), a money market fund that was pushed out in June 2013 permitting Alibaba customers to use money leftover in their Alipay accounts.

By 2030, the United Nations predicts planet Earth will have 8.5 billion residents (more potential investors) and by then many of these grandeur Middle Eastern vision plans will be complete. Sovereign funds could be commanding nearly US$ 20 trillion in assets. Next, corporate boards across the United States, Europe and Asia might have all-but-embraced some form of globally-recognized ESG standards by nudging from CalPERS, BlackRock and the Swedish buffer funds.

BlackRock Will be Bloomberg

As incumbent financial industry consultants analyze products, regulatory changes and asset flow patterns, many are missing out on BlackRock’s not-so-secret weapon. As certain financial products and services become cheaper, a key differentiating factor for these firms is technology which can reduce labor costs, improve services and reduce execution risks. In an uncompromising fashion, BlackRock continues to push its Aladding solution on new and current clients in a bid to make quitting harder, while deriving more data insights from its octopus-like client reach. Armed with eleven data centers and more than 30,000 Aladdin users, BlackRock desires to ingrain itself into the workflow of every asset owners – small or big – knowing full well that ETFs and fund mandates can be lost in a whim. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Ascendas-Singbridge Acquires Three Hotels in Osaka

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Singapore’s Ascendas-Singbridge has acquired three hotels in Osaka for 10.29 billion JPY to tap tourism growth in Japan’s third-largest city.

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