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Norway’s Sovereign Fund Flexes Muscle to Influence Corporate Change

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Norway’s sovereign wealth fund is increasingly flexing its muscle to influence and alter the behavior of publicly-listed companies. The massive wealth fund, which derived its cash pot from crude oil, has an extensive corporate governance policy providing guidance on areas such as labor regulations, executive compensation, water management, environmental impact, munitions and bombs, and climate change contributions. For example, in May 2016, Norges Bank Investment Management (NBIM), joining with other asset owners like California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), insisted U.S. oil giants Chevron and Exxon Mobil Corporation to disclose more about the perils and risks of climate change. NBIM voted in favor of climate-change risk reporting for the two companies. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

CIC Sells 10% Logicor Stake to Blackstone Fund

The China Investment Corporation (CIC) is selling a 10% stake of in European warehouse firm Logicor Ltd to a real estate fund managed by The Blackstone Group. Furthermore, CIC also hired Blackstone to oversee and manage Logicor’s warehouses and logistic properties portfolio.[ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Fintech Affirm Raises $200 Million in Series E Led By Singapore’s GIC

Affirm Inc., a financial technology firm which provides instant loans to consumers as an alternative to credit cards for their online shopping, has raised US$ 200 million in a Series E round lead by Singapore’s GIC Private Limited, with participation from Khosla Ventures, Lightspeed Venture Partners, Spark Capital, Caffeinated Capital, and Ribbit Capital. The new infusion of capital brings the San Francisco-based company’s total funding to US$ 450 million and a reported valuation of US$ 2 billion.

The company is founded by Max Levchin, a co-founder of PayPal (part of the PayPal mafia, dubbed by the tech press). Max Levchin is also an advisory board member of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFSB) in the United States.

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CHANGE: Saudi Arabia to Re-Open Movie Theaters, PIF Inks MoU with AMC

The Saudi Arabian government is ending its 35-year ban on cinemas. Next year, the government will allow cinemas to open. This watershed moment provides opportunities for entertainment companies to invest in Saudi Arabia and the surrounding region.

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