The Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute (SWFI), through its proprietary database, tracks transactions by sovereign wealth funds, pensions and other public funds. Combining all public investors, for calendar year 2015, transactions amounted to US$ 212.18 billion versus US$ 186.56 billion in 2014. On record, 2013 had the most direct transactions for public investors at US$ 220.69 billion. When it comes to sovereign wealth funds, the 2015 transaction figure amounted to US$ 113.94 billion versus US$ 122.93 billion in 2014. The pullback in direct transactions was noted in a decrease in open market transactions by sovereign funds and smaller investment amounts per deal.
The report details trends on direct deals, sectors and countries.
Top Financial Advisors for 2015
For 2015, the top three ranked financial advisors when it comes to public investor transactions were JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley, which tied at #1, Goldman Sachs at #2 and Bank of America Merrill Lynch at #3. Other notable mentions for the year are Eastdil Secured, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, UBS, RBC and Moelis. 2015 was a year of signature deals.
For calendar year 2015, the top legal advisor for public fund transactions was Clifford Chance tied with Torys LLP. In second place was Allen & Overy. Third place was Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP. Other notable mentions are Sidley Austin LLP, Weil Gotshal & Manges, White & Case and Baker & McKenzie.
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Source: SWFI – Sovereign Wealth Fund Transaction Database – www.swftransaction.com, January 25, 2016
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.
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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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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