Capital Markets

Mnuchin expected to be Trump’s Treasury secretary

Donald Trump has chosen Steven Mnuchin as his Treasury secretary, US media outlets reported on Tuesday, positioning the former Goldman Sachs banker to be the latest Wall Street veteran to receive a top administration post. Mr Mnuchin chairs both Dune Capital Management and Dune Entertainment Partners and has been a longtime business associate of Mr […]

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Banks

Financial system more vulnerable after Trump victory, says BoE

The US election outcome has “reinforced existing vulnerabilities” in the financial system, the Bank of England has warned, adding that the outlook for financial stability in the UK remains challenging. The BoE said on Wednesday that vulnerabilities that were already considered “elevated” have worsened since its last report on financial stability in July, in the […]

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Property

Zoopla wins back customers from online property rival

Zoopla chief executive Alex Chesterman has branded rival OnTheMarket “a failed experiment”, and said that his property site was winning back customers at a record rate. OnTheMarket was set up last year, aiming to compete with Zoopla and Rightmove, the UK’s two biggest property portals. It allowed estate agents to list their properties more cheaply […]

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Financial

Hard-hit online lender CAN Capital makes executive changes

The biggest online lender to small businesses in the US has pulled down the shutters and put its top managers on a leave of absence, in the latest blow to an industry grappling with mounting fears over credit quality. Atlanta-based CAN Capital said on Tuesday that it had replaced a trio of senior executives, after […]

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Banks

BoE stress tests: all you need to know

The Bank of England has released the results of its latest round of its annual banking stress tests and its semi-annual financial stability report this morning. Used to measure the resilience of a bank’s balance sheet in adverse scenarios, the stress tests measured the impact of a severe slowdown in Chinese growth, a global recession […]

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Categorized | Financial, Insurance

Temasek and RRJ take a stake in ING arm


Posted on April 30, 2014

Singapore’s state investment company and a private equity fund founded by the Malaysian dealmaker Richard Ong are to take a stake worth €1.3bn in ING’s Europe and Japan insurance arm as it gears up for a stock market launch.

Temasek and RRJ have agreed to become “cornerstone” investors in the Amsterdam listing of the insurer, which is set to rank among Europe’s biggest flotations of the year.

    Their investment will equate to a stake of between a sixth and a quarter in the insurer if investors put a price tag of between €5bn and €8bn on its total equity as analysts expect.

    The involvement of Temasek, one of the world’s most influential investors, is a sign of how it is starting to place bets on the economic recovery in Europe, having earlier made similar investments in the growth of Asia’s insurance business.

    Under the terms of the arrangement with ING, the Dutch financial services group will receive €750m from RRJ and €425m from Temasek in cash. It will also receive €100m from a Temasek subsidiary, SeaTown.

    The investors will take an initial equity stake worth about €150m in the insurer, which regulators have forced ING to sell because of its government bailout during the financial crisis, when it floats.

    Most of the investment will initially take the form of ING debt but will gradually convert to the equity of the insurer, being renamed NN Group.

    “It’s building confidence – it’s very significant for us,” said Lard Friese, the insurer’s vice-chairman who is expected to become its chief executive.

    ING is preparing to fire the starting gun on the IPO in the coming weeks, people familiar with the matter said. No firm decision has been taken on timing.

    The planned listing will be a rare coup for the Euronext group of exchanges, which comprises the Dutch bourse and counterparts in Brussels and Lisbon.

    Temasek, which managed a portfolio valued at S$215bn (US$171bn) as of March 2013, has increased its focus on Europe with the opening last month of its first office in London, which it is using as a beachhead to do deals in the region.

    Last month, Temasek highlighted its focus on what it called “recovering Europe” when it bought a 25 per cent stake in Hutchison Whampoa’s AS Watson health and beauty chain for $5.7bn. AS Watson has a significant presence in countries of eastern Europe, and owns Superdrug in the UK.

    In a statement on Wednesday, Temasek noted in connection with its investment in the Dutch life insurer that NN “also has a presence in central, eastern and the rest of Europe, as well as operations in Japan”.

    The investment is also Temasek’s first significant deal in Europe in partnership with RRJ, which was founded by Mr Ong, a former Goldman Sachs banker.

    In 2012 his brother Charles, a former chief investment officer at Temasek, joined the group as co-chairman and co-chief executive with Mr Ong.

    Temasek has partnered with RRJ before, notably in 2012 when the two jointly bough a stake in Kunlun Energy, a PetroChina unit.

    They then jointly invested $468m in Houston-based liquefied natural gas company Cheniere Energy, which is set to become a large exporter of LNG from the US. Temasek last year then sold its stake in Cheniere.