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SWFI First Read, May 4, 2017

Tasplan Awards Mandate to IFM Investors

Tasplan is a superannuation fund based in Hobart, Tasmania. Tasplan awarded a A$ 670 million mandate for IFM Investors to run an actively managed Australian core equities strategy. This coincides with the RBF Tasmanian Accumulation Scheme transferring assets to Tasplan from April 2017.

Alaska Permanent Fund Approaches $60 Billion

The Alaska Permanent Fund’s value reached US$ 57.8 billion at March 31, 2017.

Investcorp Promotes Gabriel Aractingi

Investcorp promoted Gabriel Aractingi to lead its business in Saudi Arabia. Aractingi will focus on Riyadh and the Eastern Province, while Yasser Bajsair, Investcorp managing director in Saudi Arabia, who will continue to focus on the Western Province. Aractingi joined Investcorp in 2016 as a managing director, having worked previously with Morgan Stanley as CEO of its Saudi Arabia business and before that as Head of Private Wealth Management, MENA. Aractingi also worked at Swiss private bank Lombard Odier as head of middle east and special clients.

Puerto Rico Declares a Type of Bankruptcy

Top government officials in Puerto Rico have placed the territory’s debt mess into U.S. federal bankruptcy court. Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello requested in a letter that the federally appointed oversight board trigger Title III of the Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA). Puerto Rico is not a U.S. state. Since 2006, Puerto Rico has been in a recession, trying to get assistance from the U.S. government. Puerto Rico has been trying to restructure its enormous pile of debt, approximately US$ 70 billion.

Asian Sovereign Funds Not Slowing Down on Tech Investing

According to data from SWFI’s Sovereign Wealth Fund Transaction Database, Asian sovereign funds invested US$ 6.05 billion directly into companies and assets in the information technology sector from Jan 2017 to November 22, 2017. In a comparable time frame from Jan 2016 to November 22, 2016, this same group of Asian sovereign funds directly invested US$ 5.02 billion in the sector. These are direct investments, not fund commitments or manager allocations.

Asian sovereign funds such as GIC Private Limited, Temasek Holdings and the Korea Investment Corporation (KIC) have demonstrated bullish signals to the technology community over other sectors. GIC and Temasek have also been major investors in the private side of deals, funding a wide range of tech startups, while providing financial firepower in buyout transactions.

Some notable direct tech investments in 2017 by sovereign funds include Meituan-Dianping, SoundCloud, Nets A/S, Visma AS, Turn, Inc. and Vantiv.

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Future Fund Makes a Guardian Out of Former J.P. Morgan ANZ Chair

The Australian government has appointed Robert Priestley – current non-executive chair of J.P Morgan for Australia and New Zealand (ANZ) and a non-executive director of ASX – to serve on the Future Fund Board of Guardians for a five-year term from November 7, 2017. Priestley replaces former Morgan Stanley Australia chief executive Steven J. Harker.

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Associated British Ports Reboots Property Development Arm to Capitalize on Land Bank

Associated British Ports (ABP) – operator of 21 major ports throughout the United Kingdom – has announced a reboot of its ABP Property division, complete with a new team of specialists in commercial development and logistics led by Huw Turner, in order to identify and develop strategically significant locations in its 2,372 acre land bank.

ABP is owned in large part by a consortium of pensions and sovereign funds, including the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) at 33.88% ownership, OMERS at 30%, Singapore’s GIC Ventures Pte Ltd at 20.00% ownership, and the Kuwait Investment Authority at 10.00% ownership. Large institutional investors such as sovereign funds, pensions, and endowments have slowly increased allocation towards infrastructure over the past six years as an alternative to equities and bonds, according to asset allocation data from SWFI.


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