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Friday SWFI News Roundup, December 30, 2016

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BIG DEAL: RBI Approves Fairfax Financial’s Bid to Buy Domestic Indian Bank

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) approved Canadian billionaire Prem Watsa’s Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd. ‘s bid to acquire a 51% ownership stake in Thrissur, Kerala-based Catholic Syrian Bank Ltd. This is a milestone deal because this is the first time the RBI allowed an overseas investor to acquire a majority stake in a domestic bank. Catholic Syrian Bank was founded in November 1920. At the end of March 2016, Catholic Syrian Bank had 156.5 billion INR in assets.

Hans Tietmeyer Dies at Age of 85

Hans Tietmeyer was the head of Germany’s Bundesbank from October 1993 to 1999, known as the “high priest of the D-Mark”. He was the last president of the central bank presiding under the Deutsche Mark before the move to the euro currency. Tietmeyer had joined Bundesbank in 1990. Tietmeyer passed at the age of 85 on December 27, 2016.

Malaysian Technology Development Corporation Invests in New Shares of Green & Smart Holdings

On December 20, 2016, Green & Smart Holdings plc, a renewable energy company generating power from biogas captured through the treatment of Palm Oil Mill Effluent (POME) in Malaysia, has raised about 6 million MYR (£1.14 million) through the issue of new ordinary shares, totaling 10,761,367 shares, to Malaysian Technology Development Corporation Sdn Bhd. Malaysian Technology Development Corporation is a sovereign wealth enterprise (SWE) of Khazanah Nasional and is in charge of promoting the adoption of technologies by local companies via commercialization of research & development or acquisition of foreign technologies. The new shares were issued at an effective price per share equivalent to approximately 10.62 pence. Following admission, Malaysian Technology Development Corporation will hold 19,476,367 shares in Green & Smart Holdings, amounting to 6.78% of the enlarged issued share capital of Green & Smart Holdings.

Qatar Airways Bags 10% Stake in LATAM Airlines Group

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Saudi Aramco Contemplates SABIC Stake from PIF

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Oil giant Saudi Aramco is in early discussions on whether to pursue an ownership stake in Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) from the Public Investment Fund (PIF). At the moment, Saudi Aramco has no plans to buy publicly-held shares of SABIC. SABIC was founded in 1976 by Saudi royal decree to convert oil by-products into useful chemicals, polymers, and fertilizers.

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SWFI First Read, July 19, 2018

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GIC Eyes Provenance Land

GIC Private Limited is nearing a deal to purchase up to 50% of Provenance Land. Provenance Land owns India’s first Four Seasons hotel.

Eduard van Gelderen Leaves UC Regents for PSP Investments CIO Role

Eduard van Gelderen exited his position as Senior Managing Director at the University of California Regents’ Office of the Chief Investment Officer. His role will not be replaced. He accepted an offer to be Chief Investment Officer of the Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments).

PAAMCO Prisma Holdings CEOs to Exit

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Google Fined Big Time by EU Regarding Antitrust Violations

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The European Union (EU), through its competition commissioner, levied a €4.34 billion fine against Alphabet Inc., the owner of Google. The fine is over Google having “imposed illegal restrictions on Android device manufacturers and mobile network operators to cement its dominant position in general internet search,” according to the European Commission (EC).

The European Commission is requiring Alphabet to cease from its conduct that it is accused of within 90 days or face penalty payments of up to 5% of the average daily worldwide turnover of Alphabet, Google’s parent company.

Commissioner Margrethe Vestager, in charge of competition policy, said in a press release, “Today, mobile internet makes up more than half of global internet traffic. It has changed the lives of millions of Europeans. Our case is about three types of restrictions that Google has imposed on Android device manufacturers and network operators to ensure that traffic on Android devices goes to the Google search engine. In this way, Google has used Android as a vehicle to cement the dominance of its search engine. These practices have denied rivals the chance to innovate and compete on the merits. They have denied European consumers the benefits of effective competition in the important mobile sphere. This is illegal under EU antitrust rules.”

The EC press release added, “In particular, Google: 1. has required manufacturers to pre-install the Google Search app and browser app (Chrome), as a condition for licensing Google’s app store (the Play Store); 2. made payments to certain large manufacturers and mobile network operators on condition that they exclusively pre-installed the Google Search app on their devices; and 3. has prevented manufacturers wishing to pre-install Google apps from selling even a single smart mobile device running on alternative versions of Android that were not approved by Google (so-called “Android forks”).”

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