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Why CPPIB and Ares Withdrawing Neiman Marcus from its IPO is a Big Deal

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Are large-chain physical retail stores decaying in North America? Are financial investors failing department store retail?

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Direct institutional investors such as the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and other private equity firms plugged in mounds of capital into department store companies in North America. Will these significant financial bets pay off? The bad news in retail keeps rolling in. In early January, The Limited, a women’s clothing store chain, is closing all of its 250 stories and laying off 4,000 employees. The Limited is owned by private equity firm Sun Capital Partners, which witnessed falling foot traffic at U.S. shopping malls. Even Macy’s, the largest department-store company in the United States, is shuttering 100 stores in 2017. This will end up removing 10,000 jobs at Macy’s. In addition, Illinois-based Sears Holdings Corporation, which also owns Kmart, is closing 150 stores and even sold its iconic Craftsman tool brand to Stanley Black & Decker to stave off financial ruin. Sears is led by Eddie Lampert, a hedge fund manager, who is trying to keep the company away from financial insolvency. Lampert even provided around US$ 1 billion in financing for Sears to maintain operations. Both Lampert and another hedge fund titan Bill Ackman of Pershing Square have tried their activist hands attempting to turn retail giants into “tech companies”. Ackman exited its Target investment in 2011.

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NZ Super Names Three New Board Members

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New appointments have been made to the Board of the Guardians of New Zealand Superannuation Fund (NZ Super). The appointments were made on July 19, 2018. The three new board members are Catherine Drayton, Simon Botherway and Henk Berkman.

According to the NZ Super press release, “Simon Botherway’s appointment runs from 1 August 2018 to 30 September 2021. He is a professional director with a history in investment, investment regulation and supervision. Other board roles have included his current position as Chair of Serko, a director on Callaghan Innovation and previously being the Chair of the FMA Establishment Board and a member of the Securities Commission.

Henk Berkman will serve from 1 October 2018 to 30 September 2022. He has been Professor of Finance, Department of Accounting and Finance at the University of Auckland since 2008. Mr Berkman has held previous professorial positions at Massey University, University of Sydney and the University of Maastricht.

Catherine Drayton will serve from 1 November 2018 until 30 September 2022. She is a Christchurch-based director who previously led the Assurance and Advisory Practice for PwC in Central Eastern Europe. Her public sector governance experience includes her current role as Chair of Christchurch International Airport and as a member of the University of Canterbury Council. Her experience as a Director of Ngai Tahu Holdings has provided her with iwi governance experience.”

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AIMCo Names Former Talisman Energy Executive to Board

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The Alberta Investment Management Corporation (AIMCo) appointed Jacqueline (Jackie) Sheppard as a member of the board of directors for a term set to expire on June 30, 2021. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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Grant & Eisenhofer Reveals Fortis Investors to Receive $1.5 Billion in Mega Settlement

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Law firm Grant & Eisenhofer won a landmark case for its clients after a seven-year legal duel in Dutch courts. On July 13, 2018, the Amsterdam Court of Appeals officially approved the largest securities settlement ever reached in Europe, paving a path for international insurance company Ageas N.V./S.A. to begin payment of US$ 1.5 billion (€1.3 billion) to multiple groups of institutional and individual investors from Europe and the United States. [ Content protected for Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute Standard subscribers only. Please subscribe to view content. ]

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