AUSTRALIA

UniSuper has appointed Peter Chun as chief executive from Aware Super where he was group executive for member growth.

He replaces Kevin O’Sullivan who announced earlier this year that he was stepping down after eight years in the role. O’Sullivan will stay in the role until September 6, when Chun joins the fund officially.

At Aware Super, Chun was responsible for leading the brand, marketing, digital, product and business development functions. Chun is a qualified actuary and has been with Aware for a year and a half. He was previously at Colonial First State in various senior positions for 12 years.

Source: UniSuper

Local Government Super (LGS) has rebranded as Active Super as part of a strategy to broaden its reach to new members and improve scale.

Active Super also announced the cutting of administrative fees by at least 4% depending on members’ balance, effective July 1.

The new name reflects the fund’s “active pursuit of investments that deliver solid long-term returns for members that have a positive impact on the world”, chief executive Phil Stockwell said in a statement.

Source: Active Super

AMP Australia will fire up to 20% of its staff over the next year as part of restructuring plans to save A$300 million. A spokesperson confirmed to SMH that restructuring plans did include redundancies and that staff have been communicated about the changes since January.

The changes come after former Sunsuper chief executive Scott Hartley was appointed to lead AMP Australia last December following the resignation of Alex Wade amid misconduct allegations at the firm.

Source: Sydney Morning Herald

CHINA

Recent interest rate hikes by emerging economies could lead to a bursting of global financial asset bubbles, according to a senior official with China's banking regulator.

Unprecedented pandemic easing measures by developed countries have enlarged such bubbles, Liang Tao, vice-chairman of China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission, said at the International Finance Forum in Beijing on Saturday.

Developed countries are sticking with ultra-low rates even as emerging economies raised their borrowing costs, potentially resulting in the re-pricing of global assets, he said. Countries need to coordinate financial regulation and improve the monitoring of cross-border fund flows, and emerging markets must prevent risks from large movements of the so-called hot money, Liang added.

Source: Business Times

China’s largest bank Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) received approval to set up a foreign-controlled wealth management firm with Goldman Sachs Asset Management.

The unit of US banking giant Goldman Sachs Group Inc will offer a 51% funding contribution ratio, while the wealth management unit of ICBC will offer 49%, the Chinese bank said in an exchange filing.

Source: ICBC

HONG KONG

Ayesha Macpherson Lau, the new chairwoman of the Mandatory Provident Fund Schemes Authority (MPFA), said she would keep an open mind while undertaking reforms and will work closely with the investment industry to enhance returns of the HK$1.14 trillion ($146.8 billion) Mandatory Provident Fund industry.

Fund managers meanwhile have urged Hong Kong’s pension regulator to further relax restrictions to allow them to invest in Chinese bonds, commodities and other high-yield products to enhance returns of the compulsory retirement plan that covers 4.5 million people.

Lau, who succeeded David Wong as head of the MPFA in March, also said that one of her major tasks is to ensure that the electronic MPF platform comes on stream according to schedule. The eMPF is scheduled to be introduced by the end of 2022 and become fully operational by 2025.

Source: Asia Asset ManagementSouth China Morning Post

INDIA

The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPP Investments) is forming a joint venture with mall developer Phoenix Mills to develop a 1 million square foot shopping mall in Kolkata’s upscale Alipore area.

CPP Investments will invest Rs5.6 billion ($77.3 million) in Phoenix Mills subsidiary Mindstone Mall Developers for a 49% equity stake.

The latest investment brings CPP Investments’ total commitment to multiple ventures with Phoenix Mills to over ₹26.2 billion. “India is one of the most important markets for us in Asia Pacific and a critical part of our long-term strategy,” said managing director for real estate at CPP Investments Hari Krishna.

Source: CPP Investments

INDONESIA

Indonesia's new sovereign wealth fund, the Indonesia Investment Authority (INA), has signed a memorandum of understanding with state social security fund BPJamsostek to invest in infrastructure, the companies said in a joint statement.

BPJamsostek is one of the biggest fund managers in Indonesia with Rp490.1 trillion ($34.15 billion) assets under management.

The new venture to invest directly in assets such as toll roads, seaports and airports, as well as digital infrastructure and medical support.

Source: Nasdaq

JAPAN

Japan’s life insurance companies are expected to ramp up allocations to foreign bonds by a net ¥900 billion ($8.1 billion) to as much as ¥30.87 trillion in the current financial year ending March 2022 as they search for better returns, according to estimates by the Life Insurance Association of Japan.

The nine biggest firms, including Japan Post Insurance, Nippon Life, and Dai-ichi Life, are expected to increase their foreign bond allocations by a net ¥45 billion, the industry group says.

Source: Asia Asset Management

KOREA

Samsung Life, the largest life insurance company in Korea, is entering a deal with Savills Investment Management that includes an initial stake of 25% and $1 billion of capital to invest in real estate equity and debt strategies across Europe and Asia.

The insurance group bought the 25% stake for £64 million ($90 million) and chief executive Jeon Young-Muk said that the deal would “help us expand our real estate investment network globally... and accelerate Savills Investment Management’s growth over the long term”. 

It will also help Savills IM capture additional capital from investors in South Korea and the wider Asia-Pacific region, according to the firm's announcement on May 27.

Source: Financial TimesDeal Street Asia

The National Pension Service (NPS) and the Korea Investment Corporation (KIC) have committed $600 million in aggregate to GLP Capital Partners' North America-focused logistics fund, which is targeting $2 billion at its final close.

Both funds will each contribute $300 million to the fund named GLP Capital Partners IV, which targets logistics facilities and relevant technology companies in North America, according to investment banking sources on May 28.

Source: The Korea Economic Daily

The Government Employees Pension Service (GEPS) is looking to hire six foreign securities brokerage firms for its $1.6 billion international portfolio. 

The firms will be responsible for trading services in foreign equities, bonds, and exchange-traded funds, GEPS says in a request of proposal published on the website of the Korea Investment Financial Association on May 24.

Source: Asia Asset Management

The National Pension Service (NPS) is planning to build an investment portfolio with a longer-term perspective and limit investing in industries related to coal mining and coal-fired power.

NPS's portfolio will be built with a 10-year perspective, shifting from the current five-year-based allocations. The move is expected to encourage the Korean pension scheme to take more risk to maximise returns over the next few decades, according to investment banking sources.

The fund also said that it would no longer invest in any projects for new coal power plants at home and abroad, a move that is in line with global efforts to reduce carbon emissions. 

Source: The Korea Economic DailyReuters

SINGAPORE

Singapore’s GIC plans to open a new Sydney office in 2022 to capture investment opportunities in Australia. It will be the sovereign wealth fund’s 10th international office. It already has a presence in Beijing, London, Mumbai, New York, San Francisco, Sao Paulo, Seoul, Shanghai and Tokyo.

GIC CEO Lim Chow Kiat said the fund is confident in the long-term growth of the Australian market, where it has a sizeable real estate portfolio. Among its key investments in Australia are Chifley Tower in Sydney, and Emporium and Rialto in Melbourne.

Source: Straits Times

GIC plans to acquire a 30% stake in coffee chain Starbucks Korea from Starbucks Corp for W800 billion ($710 million), according to investment banking sources.

Starbucks Corp currently owns 50% of Starbucks Korea. It is likely to sell its remaining 20% stake to Korean discount retailer E-Mart, which currently owns the remaining 50%.

Starbucks Korea was established in 1997 as a 50:50 joint venture between E-Mart and Starbucks Corp. It has 1,503 stores in the country as of December 2020.

Source: Korea Economic Daily

Singapore state investment firm Temasek has backed US private securities marketplace Forge Global’s latest $150 million funding round. Jane Atherton, managing director of investment at Temasek joins Forge’s board following the transaction.

Wells Fargo Strategic Capital, LUN Partners Group, True Global Ventures, and Deutsche Börse also participated in the round, which brings Forge’s total capital raised to approximately $250 million. The new funding will help Forge expand its offerings domestically and internationally, the company said.

Temasek’s other US investments include Verily, Pear Therapeutics, and BioNTech.

Source: DealStreetAsia

GIC backed Singapore life science company Esco Lifesciences Group’s latest $200 million funding round. The firm is reportedly mulling an IPO in Hong Kong later this year.

The funding was led by Danish investment giant Novo Holdings and US investor Vivo Capital. Chinese sovereign wealth fund China Investment also participated in the round which gives Esco a valuation of $800 million.

The new funding will be used to finance new facilities and expand Esco's contract development and manufacturing division. The firm pivoted from offering laundry services for electronics makers to manufacturing high-tech equipment.

Source: Straits Times

Temasek backed US digital health platform Noom. US buyout firm Silver Lake led the $540 round, in which life sciences investment firm Novo Holdings and healthcare venture capital firm Oak HC/FT also participated. Existing investors Sequoia Capital, RRE Ventures and Samsung Ventures also took part.

According to media reports, the latest funding values Noom at $3.7 billion. Noom said it planned to use the funds for expansion and share buybacks.

Source: DealStreetAsia

TAIWAN

Fubon Life Insurance has confirmed a $65 million commitment to KKR North America Fund XIII. The fund, which closed at $18.5 billion, is the latest North American buyout vehicle managed by KKR.

Source: Private Equity International

INTERNATIONAL

The San Antonio Fire & Police Pension Fund (SAFPPF) committed $20 million to private equity firm KKR’s flagship infrastructure fund, KKR Global Infrastructure Investors Fund IV.

According to media reports, KKR is seeking to close the fund at $12 billion. The vehicle will invest in infrastructure assets such as oil and gas pipelines and renewable energy projects. KKR’s recent investments include Indian power transmission developer IndiGrid Trust.

SAFPPF previously invested in KKR’s Global Infrastructure Investors Fund I in 2011. As of the third quarter of 2020, its net internal rate of return (IRR) was 12.37%.

Source: DealStreetAsia