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Is Vietnam the Next Logistics Play for Large Asset Owners?

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Private equity firm Warburg Pincus LLC is investing once again in Vietnam’s burgeoning commercial property market, this time via a US$ 200 million partnership with state-owned infrastructure developer Becamex IDC Corporation. The new joint venture, dubbed the BW Industrial Development JSC, will leverage Becamex’s local expertise and sizable land bank to build institutional-grade logistics and industrial properties throughout the rapidly growing Southeast Asian country’s key economic zones.

Established in 1976, Becamex is owned by the local government of Vietnam’s Binh Duong province and manages one of the largest industrial land banks in the country. The company’s portfolio of 10 industrial parks spans nearly 20,000 hectares, and has attracted more than US$ 6.3 billion worth of investment projects from more than 24 countries, according to its website. Becamex has worked with a number of international partners over the years, most notably with Temasek-sponsored Sembcorp Industries on the creation of the Vietnam Singapore Industrial Park Joint Venture Co. (VSIP) platform, which has facilitated over US$ 10 billion worth of investments since its launch in 1996.

Becamex’s much-anticipated debut on the Ho Chi Minh Stock Exchange fell flat last December after selling only 6% of offered share volume to strategic investors. The poor showing was thought to be brought on by Becamex’s highly leveraged position, and a lackluster marketing campaign from the Binh Duong People’s Committee, which retained 51% in the company. State-owned enterprises in Vietnam – many of which operate under razor-thin profit margins – have struggled to attract private investors amid concerns about vested interests.

Good Morning, Vietnam

Home to one of the fastest growing economies in the world with reported gross domestic product (GDP) growth of 6.8% in 2017, Vietnam has become an increasingly popular destination for logistics and manufacturing facilities, and international investors have begun to notice. Foreign direct investment (FDI) in Vietnam reached a record high of US$ 36 billion in 2017, a 40% increase compared to the year previous; while, the country’s manufacturing and processing industry was the lead breadwinner among Vietnam’s major industries, accounting for 40% of total FDI in 2017.

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Norway GPFG Would Prioritize Value in Tesla Stake

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Sovereign wealth fund giant Norway Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG) is an investor in Tesla, holding a 0.48% stake at the end of 2017. GPFG owns roughly 1.4% of all globally listed company shares, minus stocks from its exclusion pool. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Anbang Insurance Set to Sell its US Luxury Portfolio

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Distressed Beijing-based holding company Anbang Insurance Group is set to sell its U.S. luxury hotel properties, which were purchased for US$ 5.5 billion from the Blackstone Group in 2016. This is a move to raise quick cash, following the firm’s seizure at the hands of the Chinese government six months ago. Bids had already been ongoing for selected properties, including the famed Essex House Hotel, overlooking Manhattan’s Central Park. The portfolio of hotels is strategically placed in geographically diverse regions, including Miami and Chicago. Anbang is looking to cash in on the properties quickly, as its properties in China are already being liquidated. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Norway GPFG Returns 1.8% for Second Quarter of 2018

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Norway’s Government Pension Fund Global (GPFG) returned 1.8% for the second quarter of 2018. Listed equity investments generated a 2.7% return for the period, while fixed income returned 0%. Unlisted real estate investments posted a 1.9% return for the second quarter. In addition, the Norwegian krone depreciated against the U.S. dollar during the quarter. Furthermore, 2 billion NOK was withdrawn from the fund.

“North American and European stocks had a positive development in the quarter despite the prospect of increased trade barriers. This made a positive contribution to the fund’s return,” says Trond Grande, Deputy CEO of Norges Bank Investment Management, according to the press release.

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