Thursday , December 13 2018

CIMB’s Nazir plans to set up $1bn Southeast Asia fund

A security guard stands outside a CIMB bank branch in Shah Alam July 17, 2014. A proposed three-way merger in Malaysia will create the world's first Islamic bank that will have enough clout to challenge the dominance of conventional, often Western, banks in the industry and influence the way Islamic finance deals are made. Last week, CIMB Group Holdings Bhd, RHB Capital Bhd and Malaysia Building Society Bhd secured regulatory approval to begin their merger talks. Picture taken July 17.     REUTERS/Samsul Said   (MALAYSIA - Tags: BUSINESS RELIGION)


Nazir Razak, chairman of CIMB Group Holdings Bhd. and brother of Malaysia’s prime minister, is helping start a regional private equity fund that will seek as much as $1 billion, people with knowledge of the matter said.
Nazir will keep his role at CIMB, Malaysia’s second-largest bank, while acting as one of the fund’s five partners, according to the people. He will be joined by Kenny Kim, who previously worked under Nazir as chief financial officer of CIMB, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private.
David Heng, who recently resigned from his role as a senior managing director at Temasek Holdings Pte, will also help direct investments at the new fund, the people said. The fund, which isn’t connected to CIMB, will be based in Singapore, according to one of the people. It plans to target investments in the consumer, technology, logistics and financial services industries in Southeast Asia, the
person said.
Private equity deals in Southeast Asia have more than doubled to $37.4 billion this year, from $16.4 billion during the same period in 2016, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. An investor group agreed in July to pay $11.6 billion for Singapore warehouse operator Global Logistic Properties Ltd. in Asia’s biggest-ever buyout, the data show. “Nazir is well-respected and has a good team with him,” Danny Wong Teck Meng, chief executive officer of fund manager Areca Capital Sdn., said by phone. “Their local connections and understanding of the Southeast Asian business culture will give them an edge over other foreign funds. There are also better opportunities in this part of the world than elsewhere.”
Gita Irawan Wirjawan, who was Indonesian trade minister under the country’s last president, and former Philippine finance secretary Cesar Purisima will also be partners at the new fund, the people said. The five partners are planning to seek about $700 million to $1 billion from investors, according to one of the people. Deliberations are at an early stage, and details could change, the people said.

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