AUSTRALIA

The A$95 billion ($74.8 billion) superfund for Australia’s higher education and research sector will open to members outside the industry from July this year.

UniSuper, Australia’s fifth-largest superannuation fund, made the decision to expand membership amid “significant disruption” in the super industry and higher education sector, chief executive Kevin O’Sullivan said in a statement on Thursday (May 6).

He added that “regulatory change and industry consolidation will significantly reshape the super sector in the coming years” and that scale is “increasingly critical in delivering strong performance”.

Source: UniSuper

IOOF Holdings will take over MLC’s superannuation business after receiving approval from the Australian regulator.

The Australian Prudential Regulation Authority (Apra) approved IOOF’s application to hold a controlling stake in NULIS Nominees, the trustee for MLC Super.

The company had acquired MLC wealth for $1.44 billion last year, but needed approval from Apra under Australian law to hold a controlling stake of a superannuation entity. MLC Super has more than A$173 billion in member funds.

Source: Apra, Financial Standard

HONG KONG

The Hong Kong Monetary Authority (HKMA) on May 4 released a guideline on the Green and Sustainable Finance Grant Scheme (GSF Grant Scheme).

The GSF Grant Scheme will provide subsidy for eligible bond issuers and loan borrowers to cover their expenses on bond issuance and external review services.  It will commence on May 10 and last for three years.

Eddie Yue, chief executive of the HKMA, said, “The global green bond market has grown from practically non-existent 10 years ago to $270 billion in 2020". 

Source: HKMA

INDIA

Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) plans to acquire an additional 15.9% stake in Indian infrastructure investment trust (Invit) IndInfravit for $136 million.

The purchase will raise CPPIB’s stake in the Invit to 43.8%. Subject to regulatory approval, the transaction is due to be completed in May 2021.

IndInfravit, launched in 2018, is sponsored by L&T Infrastructure Development Projects. Its portfolio currently comprises 13 operational road concessions across India.

Source: DealStreetAsia

KOREA

The National Pension Service (NPS) announced a hiring programme to strengthen its ability to manage its fast-growing pool of assets.

The world's third-largest pension fund, with W860.3 trillion ($764.1 billion) of assets under management, listed 54 asset management positions on its website. The roles are part of a "growth strategy programme" to foster asset management expertise "for the era of 1,000 trillion won in funding."

Source: Pensions & Investments

The Korean government indirectly invested W50 billion ($44.4 million) into cryptocurrency-related funds in the past four years since 2017, according to data provided by a Korean opposition lawmaker on May 5.

These include the Ministry of SMEs and Startups, Korea Development Bank, the National Pension Service, Korea Post and Industrial Bank of Korea.

Source: The Korea Herald, Cryptonews

JAPAN

The Pension Fund Association for Local Government Officials, or Chikyoren, hired Nomura Asset Management and Tokio Marine Asset Management for two separate alternative investment mandates of unspecified value.

Nomura will manage a private debt mandate and Tokio Marine will oversee a domestic infrastructure mandate, the pension fund said in an April 29 statement uploaded to its website last week. 

Source: Asia Asset Management

MALAYSIA

Malaysian sovereign wealth fund Khazanah raised RM4.1 billion ($1 billion) from a US dollar, dual-tranche sukuk offering comprising a five-year $400 million sukuk due 2026 and a 10-year $600 million sukuk due 2031.

Khazanah said the proceeds would be used for general investments, refinancing of borrowings and working capital requirements of Shariah-compliant business activities.

The sukuk was issued via a special-purpose vehicle incorporated in the Malaysian offshore financial territory of Labuan. Khazanah previously issued a five-year $750 million US dollar sukuk in 2016.

Source: The Malaysian Reserve

Malaysian state-linked investor Permodalan Nasional (PNB) announced a new chairman for its portfolio company Sime Darby Property following the retirement of Zeti Aziz.

Rizal Rickman Ramli, PNB’s chief investment officer for private and strategic investments, succeeded Zeti Akhtar on May 6. Zeti had filled the position since July 2018.

Aziz also retired as chair of PNB on April 30.

Source: The Edge Markets

SINGAPORE

Singapore state investor Temasek has backed Chinese biotechnology firm Abiochem.

Hong Kong-based financial institution CMB International also participated in the ¥300 million ($46 million) Series C round, which brings Abiochem’s total amount raised to ¥700 million. Existing backers include venture capital firm Highlight Capital and Haitong-Fortis Private Equity Fund Management.

Abiochem said it will use the fresh funding for development and manufacturing and is eyeing an IPO in Shanghai.

Source: DealStreetAsia

GIC extended its joint venture partnership with UK student accommodation group Unite by 10 years, to September 2032. Unite and GIC will retain their 50% equity stake in the joint venture, which has assets of £814 million ($1.14 billion) as of the end of December 2020.

Unite said the partnership had so far delivered strong development returns and growth in rental income and that it will continue to seek potential acquisitions of investment assets.

Source: Morningstar

Temasek took part in a £195 million ($271 million) funding round in UK-based DNA sequencing firm Oxford Nanopore. The latest funding round brings the startup’s valuation to close to $3.44 billion and its total funding since inception in 2005 to $1.1 billion.

Besides Temasek, new investors in the company include Wellington Management, M&G Investments, and Nikon. Fellow state investor GIC also previously participated in a $140 million funding round. 

Oxford Nanopore develops genetic sequencing technology, which is used by the UK government to track Covid-19 virus variants virus globally. The firm said it plans to go public in London later this year.

Source: DealStreetAsia

Swedish autonomous vehicle technology company Einride raised $110 million in a Series B funding round backed by Singapore state investor Temasek, family office Soros Fund Management and venture capital investors Northzone and Maersk Growth.

Existing investors EQT Ventures and Norrsken VC also took part. The new round brings Einride’s total raised so far to $150 million.

Einride’s electric and autonomous pods are designed to carry freight and are used by Oatly, Coca-Cola and Electrolux. The company said the new funds would be used to expand into Europe and the US.

Source: TechCrunch

TAIWAN

pension funds supervised by the Bureau of Labor Funds (BLF) posted an investment gain of NT$184.9 billion ($6.65 billion) in the first quarter, translating into a return of 4.12%.

Assets of the eight labour pension and annuity funds rose 10.74% to NT$4.74 trillion from NT$4.28 trillion in March 2020, BLF says in a statement on May 3. Assets were up 3.94% from NT$4.56 trillion at the end of December.

The funds incurred an investment loss of NT$471.2 billion in the first quarter of 2020 amid the global market rout. They began to bounce back in July.

Source: BLF

INTERNATIONAL (EX-ASIA)

Cadillac Fairview, the real estate investment arm of Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan, is the lead founding investor in a US real estate firm’s new Asia Pacific-focused fund.

Cadillac Fairview injected $400 million in the vehicle, known as Hines Asia Property Partners. It will target opportunities in Japan, Australia, South Korea, Singapore, and Greater China.

“We believe that Asia will accelerate growth and diversification benefits to our portfolio with potential long-term outperformance,” said Duncan Osborne, Cadillac Fairview’s executive vice president of investments. This follows Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan opening of a Singapore office in September 2020. The pension fund set up its Apac headquarters in Hong Kong in 2013.

Source: DealStreetAsia