Weekly investors roundup: Temasek invests with Bill Gates fund; NPS hunting for new CIO
TOP NEWS OF THE WEEK
Temasek Holdings, alongside other investors, is taking part in Select, a new fund under Breakthrough Energy Ventures, a climate-focused investor founded by Microsoft’s Bill Gates.
Temasek, already an existing co-investor to several other Gates-backed ventures, is deepening its partnership, as Breakthrough Energy Ventures adds adaption to its investment categories.
Select is focused on helping late-stage clean-tech start-ups scale and build new facilities, with an eye on markets including Asia.
To date, Breakthrough Energy Ventures has already raised more than $2 billion via three funds, but the target size was not yet announced.
Source: The Edge Singapore
Korea's National Pension Service (NPS) is looking for a new chief investment officer (CIO) as former CIO Ahn Hyo-joon’s term ended on October 18.
The world’s third-largest pension fund, managing W882.7 trillion ($624.3 billion) in assets as of end-June, will begin the procedures to recruit a new CIO from as early as November. Until it selects a new CIO, Park Seong-tae, managing director at the fund's investment strategy and responsible investment and governance, will serve as acting CIO.
Ahn was the longest-serving CIO in the pension fund's history, holding the post for four years. He took office in October 2018 for a two-year term and served two consecutive one-year terms.
Source: Korea Economic Daily
Canadian Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) plans to invest ¥70 billion yen ($474 million) in Shizen Energy, a Japanese developer of renewable energy.
CDPQ will invest ¥20 billion yen by subscribing to Shizen Energy convertible bonds in October. In addition, ¥50 billion yen has been set aside for an investment framework in which Shizen will develop renewable energy power generation in Japan and overseas.
The Canadian fund will dispatch a director to the Japanese company's board to determine which development projects to invest in.
Source: Shizen Energy
OTHER INVESTMENT NEWS
The NSW government has chosen BlackRock's Akaysha Energy to construct one of the largest committed utility scale batteries in the world.
Akaysha will be in charge of building a battery energy storage system (BESS) with a guaranteed continuous active power capacity of at least 700 MWs and a guaranteed usable energy storage capacity of at least 1400 MWh as the chosen service provider.
The BESS — which would be housed on a 138,000 square meter site located 100 kilometers north of Sydney — is a component of the NSW government's reaction to the Eraring Power Station's projected early closure in August 2025.
Source: Financial Standard
Kotak Investment Advisors — set up by the Kotak Mahindra Group and backed by Uday Kotak — is reportedly set to raise about $1 billion for a new fund dedicated to investing in India’s residential real estate, a person close to the matter told Bloomberg.
Abu Dhabi Investment Authority is likely to contribute around $500 million into the property fund, while Allianz SE could invest around $220 million. Kotak Investment is also allegedly in advanced talks with other investors for the fundraising.
According to the source, Kotak Investment plans to complete the fundraising by the end of 2022 and to start investing in residential properties across India’s top five cities next year.
Singapore-based insurtech startup Bolttech announced today that it has secured an undisclosed sum in Series B financing led by Japanese insurance holding company Tokio Marine.
The names of co-investors in this round were not disclosed. The round values Bolttech at approximately $1.5 billion.
Launched in 2020, Bolttech aims to make connections between insurers, distributors and customers easier and more efficient to buy and sell insurance and protection products. It works with insurers, telcos, retailers, banks, e-commerce and digital destinations to embed insurance into their customer journeys at the point of need.
Korea's sovereign wealth fund Korea Investment Corporation (KIC) posted $28.4 billion in losses in the first eight months of this year as global stock and bond markets suffered turmoil, and the fast-weakening local currency resulted in a decline in the valuation of its offshore holdings, its chief said October 19.
In a parliamentary audit, Jin Seung-ho, head of KIC said the fund's return on investment had declined to minus 13.87% as of end-August. Of note, its return on investment in such traditional assets as stocks and bonds fell 16.85% over the cited period.
The tumble in profits comes as global stock and bond markets have sharply declined on worries over aggressive monetary tightening in major countries and growing possibility of a global economic slowdown. The Korean won's depreciation against the dollar has also led to a decline in the converted value of its overseas asset holdings.
Source: Korea Times
Korea’s National Pension Service (NPS) has been spotted selling dollars for won, supporting the ailing local unit, as NPS may have seen the currency bottoming out, foreign exchange market sources in Seoul said.
The NPS sold dollar/won forwards as “tactical” currency hedging on overseas investments, which indicated the pension fund may not expect the South Korean currency to weaken further, said sources with direct knowledge of the trading. On October 18, the NPS was suspected of dumping dollars, according to currency market sources.
Source: Korea Economic Daily
The Retirement Fund (Inc) (Kwap), Malaysia's pension fund for civil servants, is looking to invest in impact investing as it grows its asset allocation in the private equity market.
During an online session on Monday (October 17), chief executive Nik Amlizan said that companies with strong cash flow and embracing the element of the environmental, social, and governance (ESG) make good long-term partners for private market investments.
KWAP chief executive officer Nik Amlizan Mohamed elaborated that the fund's interests are domestic companies that are working on food security, renewable energy and providing retirement services.
In August, Kwap expressed its goal to raise the percentage of its private market investments to 20% by 2025 when it launched its three-year transformation plan Teras 5. Kwap is pushing for a 7% return per annum and a gross fund size of RM200 billion by 2025.
Source: The Edge Markets
Warburg Pincus LCC is investing $350 million to set up a Southeast Asian digital general insurance platform called Oona Insurance, marking the US-based private equity firm's largest investment in the insurance sector in Asia.
Warburg Pincus is partnering with Abhishek Bhatia, a former group chief officer of Asian insurance company FWD Group's new business models unit, to set up the new business, the buyout firm said in a statement on Thursday.
Warburg Pincus said Oona comprises its insurance assets - Indonesia's PT Asuransi Bina Dana Arta Tbk and Philippines' Mapfre Insular Insurance Corp - which will give the platform an immediate foothold in Southeast Asia to build business and scale up.
Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC expects further slowdown in world economic growth, with the possibility a global recession, chief executive Lim Chow Kiat told Reuters in an interview.
The fund is prepared to stress-test its portfolio if need be, Lim said, as rising inflation poses a big risk and that central banks needed to get it under control to ensure global economic stability.
"Otherwise we could stare at a prolonged period of difficulties both for the economies and across the financial markets," said Lim, who was in Sydney to open the fund's Australia office.
"We expect more slowdown ... we do not know the extent of that or how far it will go," Lim said.
Source: Channel News Asia