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Friday SWFI News Roundup, May 20, 2016

MOODY’S: U.S. Tech Giants Hold Massive Pools of Cash

Ratings agency Moody’s Investors Service put out a study showing that Apple, Microsoft, Alphabet (formerly called Google), Cisco Systems and Oracle are sitting on US$ 504 billion, or 30%, of the US$ 1.7 trillion in cash and cash equivalents held by U.S. non-financial companies in 2015. The cash concentration is higher in 2015 compared to 2014, in which the companies mentioned held 27% of cash and 25% of cash in 2013.

December 2015 – Financial Data – Cash in Billions

    Apple, AAPL, US$ 215.7
    Microsoft, MSFT, US$ 102.6
    Alphabet, GOOGL, US$ 73.1
    Cisco Systems, CSCO, US$ 60.4
    Oracle, ORCL, US$ 52.3

Source: Moody’s Investors Service

CPPIB Posts Lowest Return Since Great Recession

The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) posted an annual return of 3.4%. This is its lowest rate of return since the Great Recession. CPPIB released its latest annual report.

Korean Investors Buy IZD Tower in Vienna

CBRE Global Investors acquired IZD Tower in Vienna, Austria for Korean separate account institutional clients. The office tower is located in the district of Donau City. The seller is a fund managed by Vienna-based Signa Real Estate Capital Partners.

QIA Interested in Asia Square Tower I

Another sovereign wealth fund is taking a crack at a large Singapore office property. The Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) has expressed interest in the Asia Square Tower 1 in Singapore. The seller is BlackRock.

Hermes Investment Management Buys Out Future Fund’s Stake in Southern Water

Hermes Investment Management, owned by the U.K.’s BT Pension Scheme, acquired a 17% stake in British utility Southern Water that was owned by Australia’s Future Fund. The Future Fund indicated it was looking to dispose of its position in Southern Water. Hermes Investment Management now owns 21% of Southern Water.

STT Buys Large Stake in Data Center from Tata

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Qatar Central Bank Deals with MSCI

MSCI, a stock index company whose benchmarks influence investor behavior, has tremendous indirect power impacting the stock markets of smaller economies. In 1988, MSCI released its emerging markets index, a now-widely-used benchmark for many institutional investors wanting access to growth markets. China and South Korea make up the majority of the benchmark, but smaller economies such as Poland, Chile and even Qatar make up other pieces of it.

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bcIMC Buys into Bottling Business with PAI in €1.623 Billion Takeover of Refresco

Dutch soft-drink bottler Refresco Group N.V. has agreed to a buyout offer for all 81.2 million of its shares from French private equity firm PAI Partners SAS (PAI) and Canadian pension manager British Columbia Investment Management Corporation (bcIMC) in exchange for €20 in cash per ordinary share for a total consideration of €1.623 billion. Refresco’s major shareholders, which includes 3i Group, and shareholding members of its boards, who represent 26.5% of outstanding shares, have said they stand behind the deal.

Refresco’s board rejected an initial offer from PAI in April 2017 of €1.4 billion, which they felt did not adequately capture the value added by their plans to bolster its presence in North America through the acquisition of Canadian bottler Cott TB, a deal that went through in July for US$ 1.25 billion.

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Digital Insurance Distributor BGL Opts for CPPIB Money Over IPO

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) is investing £675 million (US$ 895.715 million) for a 30% stake in Peterborough-based BGL Group, a digital distributor of insurance and household financial services to 8.5 million customers. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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