TOP NEWS OF THE WEEK:
Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC has emerged as the potential investor to bankroll the mooted A$8 billion-odd ($5.6 billion) Ramsay Health Care property spin-off, should KKR pull off Australia’s biggest ever private equity buyout, according to the Financial Review on June 14.
Sources said GIC had committed to taking as much as an 80% stake in the mooted real estate company. It is not known what GIC has proposed to pay for the stake. Analysts have valued the Ramsay property portfolio at about a 5% capitalisation rate (implying 20-times annual profit, although similar transactions in the sector have been done for higher prices).
Australia’s Charter Hall – a leading property management investment company - remains in talks with KKR on the Ramsay deal, the sources said. Charter Hall and GIC have collaborated in previous deals including the service station giant Ampol’s property trust in 2020 and the acquisition of the two-tower Southern Cross complex in the Melbourne CBD for A$2.1 billion in April this year.
Source: Financial Review
Japan’s prime minister Fumio Kishida and his cabinet have announced a push for the Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF) to allocate funds to venture capital and start-ups.
The government said it was working to boost the number of start-ups 10-fold over five years and will also promote other measures including helping new businesses bid for public procurement projects and making it easier for founders to access loans.
The Keidanren, Japan’s largest business lobby, in March called for use of the ¥10 trillion ($75 billion) that GPIF has available for alternative investments. GPIF is allowed to allocate up to 5% of its total AUM for alternative investments, including venture capital and start-ups, but it is currently far from reaching that cap.
Source: The Financial Times
Shenzhen-based insurer Funde Sino Life Insurance became the largest shareholder of National Trust Ltd. by acquiring a 40.72% stake in the trust and investment business from two shareholders.
The Beijing Banking Regulatory Bureau approved the equity transfer from Shanghai Chuangxin Asset Management and Shanghai Hengfengyu Industry Development to their parent Funde, according to a statement by the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC).
Before the transaction, National Trust had four shareholders. The two others are Shanghai Fengyi Equity Investment Fund with 31.73% and Shanghai Jing’an Industry with 27.55%. Fengyi, Chuangxin and Hengfengyu are controlled by Funde founder and Chairman Zhang Jun. Jing'an Industry is controlled by Guo Xiaoqun and Guo Xiaoting, children of property developer Kaisa Group’s founder Guo Yingcheng.
Source: Caixin Global
MORE INVESTMENT NEWS:
Australian pension funds Mercy Super and Hesta have agreed to merge via a successor fund transfer, the latest deal in an ongoing wave of consolidation among the country’s superannuation funds.
The funds are currently conducting due diligence and aim to complete the merger before the end of the year, according to a press release on June 14.
Upon completion, the merger would lead to 13,000 Mercy Super members being transferred to Hesta and its 930,000 members, creating a fund with almost $48.9 billion (A$70 billion) in assets under management.
Debt-ridden China Huarong Asset Management said it has agreed to sell its $1.8 billion stake in a regional commercial bank, as the embattled firm continues to offload assets and restructure its sprawling business.
Huarong has signed a contract with a consortium consisting of Hunan Chasing Financial Holdings Group and Central Huijin Investment to sell its holdings in Huarong Xiangjiang Bank Corp, according to the company’s filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
Source: Caixin Global
China Asset Management’s international arm has launched a renminbi-denominated investment grade income fund in Hong Kong that focuses primarily on dim sum bonds – fixed-income securities issued in the city in RMB – and onshore Chinese debt.
According to ChinaAMC (HK), it is the first Hong Kong-domiciled fixed income product denominated in RMB that offers cross-market exposure to pure investment-grade bonds.
The ChinaAMC Select RMB Investment Grade Income Fund is aimed at achieving “relatively stable return in volatile market conditions through implementing a highly diversified and investment strategy”, the asset management firm said in a statement on June 13, when launching the fund.
Source: Asia Asset Management
New World Development has sold $700 million of corporate sustainable bonds, which it says is the world’s first dual-tranche social and green debt offering denominated in US dollars.
The issuance comprises $200 million of five-year social bonds at a coupon of 5.875% and $500 million of green perpetual bonds with a coupon of 6.15%. Investors in the offering included private banks and fund managers, the property developer says in a statement on June 10, without providing more details.
Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation, Standard Chartered, UBS, Mizuho Securities and Morgan Stanley were the joint book-runners.
Source: Asia Asset Management
The proposed sovereign wealth fund by Sarawak is important for the future of the children in the East Malaysian state, particularly in the area of education, said its premier Abang Johari Tun Openg, adding that he will table the bill to introduce the fund at the legislative assembly sitting in November.
He said the funds can be channeled to education loans and scholarships. Besides generating revenue through oil and gas taxation, Abang Johari said Sarawak is expected to earn income from the new economy ideas such as carbon storage.
Source: Malay Mail
The Philippines and United Arab Emirates (UAE) have signed an Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (IPPA), paving the way for the entry of P7.1 billion ($132 million) worth of investments into the Philippines and 2,500 job opportunities for Filipinos.
The IPPA signed on June 9 would allow the Philippines access to UAE’s combined sovereign wealth funds amounting to $1.6 trillion and lead to the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) with the UAE, Philippine trade secretary Ramon Lopez said.
The UAE has several sovereign wealth funds, including the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority, the Investment Corporation of Dubai, Mubadala Investment Company and the Abu Dhabi Developmental Holding Company.
Source: Manila Standard
Singapore’s GIC has invested $48 million in Wow Skin Science – an India-based health, grooming, and beauty start-up – a month after the personal care company had announced the wealth fund’s participation in its latest funding round.
With the fundraiser, GIC will hold 17.24% in the company, according to filings with the Registrar of Companies. Wow Skin Science has a post-money valuation of $275 million to $280 million and is rumoured to be raising another round at a $400 million to $420 million valuation.
Wow Skin Science sells natural, toxin-free beauty products, ranging from skin, hair, and body maintenance items to health and weight management supplements. It sells across brick-and-mortar stores as well as e-commerce sites such as Amazon and operates in India and the US.
Source: Tech In Asia
French sustainability data firm EcoVadis has raised $500 million to become one of the sector's first unicorns, as demand from companies to track their performance on environmental and social issues surges, its co-chief executive Frederic Trinel told Reuters on June 14.
The financing, led by private equity firms Astorg and BeyondNetZero, General Atlantic's climate investing arm, as well as Singapore's GIC and Princeville Capital, is the largest equity fundraising to date for such a company, said EcoVadis.
It takes the total capital raised by the company to over $725 million. Used by more than 95,000 businesses across 200 industry categories and 175 countries, EcoVadis provides ratings on environmental, social and governance-related (ESG) issues and helps companies to improve their scores.
Singapore’s Frasers Logistics & Commercial Trust (FLCT) has paid A$61 million ($42.3 million) to Australian industrial property Goodman Group for three newly built warehouses in western Melbourne.
The fully leased logistics facilities – completed in May - are located at Magnesium Place in Truganina and range in size from 4000sq m to 8000sq m.
Source: Financial Review
Taiwanese insurers Cathay Life Insurance and Fubon Life Insurance have made a total of $91 million in new capital commitments to three funds, according to separate filings on the Taiwan Stock Exchange.
Cathay Life Insurance, the insurance subsidiary of Taiwanese conglomerate Cathay Financial Holdings, has agreed to commit €30 million ($31 million) to The Eighth Cinven Fund, the latest private equity vehicle of European fund manager Cinven Ltd.