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Sovereign Funds Spent Another Year Hunting for Payment Fintech Plays

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Global sovereign wealth funds are taking up larger stakes in the booming financial technology industry. According to the SWFI transaction database, sovereign funds like Singapore’s Temasek Holdings have been tepidly shifting out of Western banks in favor for companies like Mastercard and smaller fintech plays like Eigen Technologies, which is a London-based artificial intelligence (AI) technology platform that reads legal and financial documents. While valuations are high, confidence in the long term potential of some tech companies is strong enough to overcome the cost burden. Sovereign wealth fund managers don’t seem to mind paying a premium for a company that is likely to prosper. Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) funneled big money to the ginormous SoftBank Vision Fund which aims to target at least US$ 200 million toward financial technologies. Ibrahim Ajami, Head of Venture Capital at Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Investment Company, opened an office in San Francisco. Mubadala perceives venture investing as a collaborative endeavor.

Fintech Payments Ecosystem

Proximity to the Silicon Valley is seen as the best way to be a part of the conversation, and to make prudent financial decisions. Payments processor Worldpay is one such investment. Worldpay processes a variety of payments online. Over 300 payment types are accepted, and Worldpay notes that US$ 40 billion in transactions pass through their systems each year. This includes payments in 146 countries. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

PSP Investments and Blue Sky Alternative Investments End Strategic Partnership Agreement

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Blue Sky Alternative Investments Limited informed Canada’s Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments) that it agreed to terminate its strategic agreement effective March 31, 2019. In December 2017, Blue Sky Alternative Investments forged an agreement with PSP Investments to assist in committing capital in a number of agricultural investments.

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Yield-Hungry Korean Insurance Capital Backs TSX Broadway

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Mirae Asset Daewoo Co., Ltd., the Seoul-based investment banking firm, has provided a US$ 375 million loan for a redevelopment in New York’s Times Square. It joins L & L Holding Company, Maefield Development, and Fortress Investment Group who are bringing the development known as TSX Broadway to life. The building is at 1568 Broadway in Manhattan. TSX Broadway, a US$ 2.5 billion project when all equity financing is added in, will allow for renovations and expansion of the 46-storey building. An LED screen, which is not an uncommon sight in the Big Apple, will wrap around the corner of the tower. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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OFFICIALS: Saudi Crown Prince Denies Interest in Acquiring Manchester United

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The Saudi Arabian government dispelled rumors that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman will acquire football club Manchester United. However, Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF) had talks regarding sponsorship with the football club. Manchester United signed a partnership deal with Saudi Arabia’s General Sports Authority in 2017.

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