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SWFI First Read, April 2, 2018

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SoftBank Vision Fund Backs Indian Solar Venture with GCL System

Japan-based SoftBank Group inked a deal with China-based GCL System Integration Technology Co Ltd to form a US$ 930 million Indian joint solar venture. GCL is contributing the technology to the venture, while SoftBank is focusing on buying land and working through legal hurdles. SoftBank will control 60% of the Indian venture, with GCL owning the other 40%. SoftBank Group will use the Vision Fund’s capital for the venture.

Sequoia Capital Leads Investment Round into Cobalt Robotics

Sequoia Capital led a US$ 13 million Series A funding round into Cobalt Robotics, a startup focused on developing robotic security guards for office buildings. Other investors in the round include Founders Fund, Storm Ventures and Bloomberg Beta.

PSP Investments Commits to D-Wave Systems

On March 5, 2018, Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investments) committed US$ 20 million to invest into D-Wave Systems Inc., a quantum computing systems and software company.

Alibaba Solidifies Ownership of Ele.me

Alibaba Group Holding Limited moved to acquire China-based Ele.me, a local delivery company. Alibaba Group is buying out all the shares of Ele.me that it does not already own. The transaction gives Ele.me an enterprise valuation of US$ 9.5 billion, according to Alibaba Group. At the moment, Alibaba Group and its affiliate Ant Small and Micro Financial Services Group own approximately 43% of Ele.me’s outstanding voting shares.

South Korean Handbag Maker’s Investment Unit Likes Mezzanine Debt

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GIC Buys Large Stake in Nordic Aviation Capital

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Singapore’s GIC Private Limited, a yield-hungry sovereign investor, invested in Denmark-based Nordic Aviation Capital A/S, becoming a significant minority shareholder. Other shareholders in Nordic Aviation Capital include EQT VI Limited fund, KIRKBI Invest (wealth origins tied to Legos), and Martin Møller, the founder of Nordic Aviation Capital. EQT VI will remain the largest shareholder of Nordic Aviation Capital. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Trump Wants Pharma Companies to Disclose Drug Prices in Advertisements

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U.S. President Trump is progressing on plans to mandate pharmaceutical companies to reveal their prices in drug advertisements. “The drug industry remains resistant to providing real transparency around their prices, including the sky-high list prices that many patients pay,” Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said in a statement. “So while the pharmaceutical industry’s action today is a small step in the right direction, we will go further.”

The U.S. Health and Human Services Department would require pharmaceutical companies to include drugs’ sticker prices in their video advertisements. This would be similar to how drug companies disclose the laundry list of side effects.

Increasingly, sovereign funds like Temasek Holdings have backed mid-stage pharmaceutical companies and other therapies, while market investors like Norway’s GPFG have large holdings in listed pharmaceutical companies.

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Kazatomprom Treads Closer to IPO

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Kazatomprom is the world’s biggest uranium producer, accounting for around 20% of production market share. The company is moving forward on floating up to a 25% company stake for its planned initial public offering in London and Astana, Kazakhstan. Kazatomprom’s IPO plans are subject to market conditions. The global market price of uranium generated significant price gains year-to-date through almost three quarters. So far, during 2018, the uranium spot price has moved from US$ 20 per pound to US$ 27 per pound.

Kazatomprom’s sole shareholder is Samruk-Kazyna. Samruk-Kazyna would retain at least a 75% stake in the company.

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Credit Suisse and JPMorgan are joint global coordinators and joint bookrunners for the share offering. China International Capital Corporation, Halyk Finance, and Mizuho International plc were joint bookrunners.

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