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The Most Active Sovereign Wealth Fund Investors of 2013

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Sovereign Wealth Fund Direct Transactions by Year

sovereignwealthfund_transactions_march2014_annualSource: Sovereign Wealth Fund Transaction Database – March 2014

2013 was a milestone year for sovereign wealth funds acquiring companies and assets. According to the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute’s proprietary transaction database, 2012 transactions amounted to US$ 65.09 billion, a drop from 2011’s US$ 90.04 billion. 2013 has set a record of US$ 174.73 billion in direct sovereign wealth fund transactions. This rebound of direct transactions reflects sovereign funds’ growth in assets, maturation of internal operations in the larger funds and improved confidence in the world economy.

The investment strategies of sovereign wealth funds has changed over the past eight years. Broadening direct investment tactics from acquiring manufacturing companies to farmland in Australia, fosters a growing role of sovereign funds as serious forms of long-term capital.

The majority of direct sovereign wealth fund investment activity flows from three key geographic areas: Asia, Gulf States and Northern Europe. Excluding Norway, the Asian sovereign wealth funds outmatched the Gulf-based sovereign funds on direct purchases in terms of total transaction amounts.

Who were the most active sovereign wealth funds in direct investing for 2013?

3. The Towers of Abu Dhabi
The Abu Dhabi Investment Authority’s buying splurge of core assets in Europe and Australia has pushed up the level of direct investment activity in both observations and transaction amounts for the fund. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

Mergermarket Gets Ready to be Sold

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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.

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Why Japan Post Sees Promise in Aflac

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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.

[ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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RDIF and Development Agency of Serbia Agree to Explore Joint Investments

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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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