Weekly Digest: Philippines pension mulls more managers; HK gives nod to spot bitcoin ETFs

Philippines' SSS plans to outsource more to investment managers; HK approves spot bitcoin ETFs, Nippon Life Insurance sets up new India unit; APG in joint deal to invest in Australian student housing; and more.
Weekly Digest: Philippines pension mulls more managers; HK gives nod to spot bitcoin ETFs


The Philippines' Social Security System (SSS) is considering to tap more fund managers this year as part of a strategy to further diversify its investment portfolio.

The pension fund manager for private sector employees and self-employed is looking to tap five or six more local fund managers this year, Ernesto Francisco Jr., SSS vice president for fund management, told reporters on the sidelines of a recent press briefing.

“Internally, we’re confident (with our fund management), we’re earning more than six percent. But the hiring of outsourced fund managers is a strategy to diversify our management. Two things can be achieved: better returns and we (are able to tap) their technology and brains,” Francisco said.

Source: Malaya Business Insight

The Hong Kong regulator gave initial approvals for asset managers to start spot bitcoin and ether exchange-traded funds (ETFs), the firms said, a development that boosts both digital assets as well as the wider crypto market.

Harvest Global Investments and a partnership between HashKey Capital and Bosera Asset Management (International) announced initial approvals in separate statements on Monday.

The Hong Kong unit of China Asset Management also said it received approval from the city’s Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) for the provision of virtual-asset management services and is deploying resources to develop products.

Source: Bloomberg; company press releases



Dutch pension investor APG Asset Management, Scape Australia, and Ivanhoé Cambridge, a global real estate investor, formed a partnership to develop purpose built student accommodation assets in Australia’s student housing sector.

The new joint venture, which is subject to regulatory approval, is the third in a series of development JV vehicles. It will focus on urban locations close to Australia’s world-class universities.

The JV is seeded with a prime development opportunity of about 1,000 purpose built student accommodation apartments at Queen Victoria Market in Melbourne.

Source: Ivanhoé Cambridge


Nippon Life Insurance obtained approval from Indian authorities on April 10 to establish a subsidiary in Mumbai, India, calling India “an important market for Nippon Life due to its status as the world’s most populous country and its promising growth prospects”.

Nippon Life already operates life insurance and asset management businesses in India through strategic investments in Reliance Nippon Life Insurance Company Limited and Nippon Life India Asset Management Limited.

Nippon Life Asia Pacific’s functions include market research and business management in the Asia region.

The subsidiary will be established through the Singapore-based subsidiary, Nippon Life Asia Pacific.

Source: Nippon Life


Korea Post sent out requests for proposals (RFPs) for a W150 billion ($108.5 million) domestic infrastructure debt fund mandate, as well as for domestic real estate mortgage loans and NPL blind funds.

The infrastructure blind fund vehicle will have a three-year investment period and a targeted annual return of 4%. Bidding manager must have at least five years of infrastructure investment experience and at least W1 billion of total asset under management.

Source: Korea Post

An international tribunal ordered the South Korean government to pay W43.8 billion, or $32 million, in compensation to a US-based hedge fund in an investor-state dispute settlement over the controversial 2015 merger of two Samsung affiliates.

Mason Capital, which held a 2.18% share in Samsung C&T at the time, opposed the 2015 merger, claiming that the proposed exchange ratio of 0.53 Chaeil shares for every Samsung C&T share undervalued the shares it held.

The hedge fund argued that the government intervened in favor of the merger by exerting excessive influence on the state-run National Pension Service (NPS), a major shareholder of Samsung C&T, to approve the merger.

Source: Yonhap News Agency


Metrobank Trust, the trust banking arm of Metropolitan Bank & Trust Co., has been selected by state-pension fund Social Security System (SSS) to oversee a P1.5 billion ($26.4 million) balanced fund.

Under the mandate, Metrobank Trust is responsible for managing and growing SSS’s Balanced Fund, by investing in various equities and fixed-income assets, with the goal of bringing back optimal returns to the state-pension fund for private sector employees.

Source: Malaya Business Insight


Temasek, Breakthrough Energy, the climate organisation founded by Bill Gates, and Enterprise Singapore (EnterpriseSG), the government agency championing enterprise growth, signed a memorandum of understanding to establish Breakthrough Energy Fellows – Southeast Asia (BE Fellows – SEA)  with a joint funding commitment over the next three years.

The programme will be helmed out of Singapore and marks the first BE Fellows hub outside of the United States.

It aims to tackle early-stage barriers to climate technology innovation in Southeast Asia and accelerate the development of climate technologies that have the potential to significantly reduce greenhouse gases at scale and contribute towards global net-zero targets.

Source: Temasek

The above briefs have been curated from third-party sources and news releases.

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