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Friday SWFI News Roundup, February 20, 2015

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NAMA Awards Cushman & Wakefield Corporate Finance NPL Sales Mandate

Ireland’s National Asset Management Agency (NAMA) has awarded Cushman & Wakefield Corporate Finance the mandate to sell a portfolio of non-performing loans with a face value of €8.4 billion. The portfolio of non-performing loans consists of approximately 500 borrowers in both residential and commercial properties. On behalf of NAMA, Capital Asset Services and Allied Irish Bank are managing the loans.

Actis and Mainstream Renewable Power Form Renewable Energy Platform for Africa

Mainstream Renewable Power and private equity firm Actis have agreed to build a US$ 1.9 billion energy platform to back wind and solar power projects in sub-Saharan Africa. The platform is called Lekela Power which is being funded through a combination of debt and equity. Actis will own 60% of Lekela Power. The two parties have worked together in Chile and South Africa. Actis has created similar platforms in India and Latin America.

Central Bank of Nigeria Ditches Weekly FX Auctions

Central Bank of Nigeria is ditching its weekly foreign exchange auctions. Essentially, this is an effective devaluation of Nigeria’s currency, the naira. The central bank commented that the US dollar sales at auctions were sucking away foreign exchange reserves. As of February 16, 2015, Nigeria’s foreign reserves totaled US$ 32.7 billion.

Samruk-Kazyna Looks to Borrow US$ 2 to US$ 2.5 Billion in 2015

Samruk-Kazyna, one of Kazakhstan’s sovereign wealth funds, is thinking about borrowing US$ 2 billion to US$ 2.5 billion. In 2014, Samruk-Kazyna formed a three year transformation plans for all of its portfolio companies.

ADIA Buys Future Madison Square Park Edition Hotel from Marriott International

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Mergermarket Gets Ready to be Sold

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Private equity firm BC Partners hired Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. to advise on the sales of Acuris. Acuris is a collection of financial news and data sites, which includes Mergermarket, Dealreporter, and Debtwire. In 2017, BC Partners sold around a 30% stake in GIC Private Limited.

Before the rebranding to Acuris, Mergermarket was part of The Financial Times Group until 2013 when it was sold off to BC Partners.

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Why Japan Post Sees Promise in Aflac

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Aflac Inc. is an American insurance company founded in 1955. The company is the biggest provider of supplemental insurance in the United States. Aflac also has major operations in Japan.

In December 2018, Japan Post Holdings (JPHLF) signaled it was spending US$ 2.64 billion for a 7-8 % stake in Aflac. The goal is that, in four years time, Aflac will become an affiliate of Japan Post. Japan Post hopes to accomplish this by becoming the largest voting shareholder of the company. The world’s 13th largest company, with 400,000 employees, Japan Post needs to expand to chase further growth, mainly because Japan Post expects the postal business to decline. Diversification is seen as the optimal route to long term stability for the holding company. Japan’s economy is worrying. Japan’s aging population means that many insurance companies are facing a shrinking customer base, Japan Post settled on a plan to expand overseas.

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RDIF and Development Agency of Serbia Agree to Explore Joint Investments

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The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) and the Development Agency of Serbia, also known as Razvojna agencija Srbije, reached an agreement to work together to identify attractive investment projects to strengthen bilateral economic ties and increase investment flows between Russia and Serbia. Russian capital and businesses are keen on investing in Serbia.

In addition, the two countries signed an agreement to cooperate on civil nuclear energy, according to state-owned Russian reactor builder Rosatom (Rosatom State Nuclear Energy Corporation). Rosatom continues to expand it business of nuclear cooperation deals in a wide number of countries.

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