Marks SEASAF’s first investment in Thailand
Kuala Lumpur: The South East Asian Strategic Assets Fund (SEASAF), advised and managed by CIMB Standard recently completed the acquisition of Babcock & Brown’s (B&B) interest in Babcock & Brown Asia Infrastructure Fund’s (BBAIF). BBAIF is based in Thailand.
B&B was an international investment and specialised fund and asset management group with capabilities in structured finance, with the creation, syndication and management of asset and cash-flow based investments. It had set up a funds management platform across its four operating divisions including real estate, infrastructure, operating lease and corporate & structured finance, which resulted in the creation of a number of focused investment vehicles in the areas of real estate, renewable energy and infrastructure. The company went into voluntary administration in March 2009.
Established in November 2007, BBAIF is an infrastructure fund co-sponsored by The Bank of Tokyo–Mitsubishi UFJ, Ltd. (BTMU) and B&B with a focus on investment grade countries in Asia.
“In terms of geographic coverage and investment strategy, the acquisition of Asia Infrastructure Fund (AIF) complements those of the two funds we already have under management. With this acquisition, we effectively take over BBAIF’s office in Bangkok and this immediately gives us presence on the ground in Thailand, one of SEASAF’s main markets,” said Dr Johan Bastin, Chief Executive Officer of CIMB Standard.
“Furthermore, we are anticipating that two additional experienced senior investment professionals will join our team and contribute and strengthen our investment sourcing and management capacity for SEASAF and CIMB Standard as a whole,” he said.
Johan explained that the acquisition will also enable CIMB Standard to more rapidly expand its investment portfolio and allow it to strengthen its post-closing investment management capability.
“It is an integral part of CIMB Standard’s strategy to consolidate and strengthen its position as the leading infrastructure funds manager in the Southeast Asian region and expand its fund management platform through the launching of new funds and through the acquisition of existing funds such as BBAIF,” he added.
This acquisition follows on the initial closing in July by CIMB Standard of the Islamic Infrastructure Fund (IIF), with the ADB and IDB as sponsor investors and a target size of USD500 million. It is also a testament to the achievements of SEASAF, CIMB Standard’s first fund which closed in March 2006 at USD147 million and focuses on energy and infrastructure investments in the ASEAN region.
“Adding an office in Bangkok is strategic and precedes the planned opening of an additional office in Jakarta later in the year. We are also looking towards establishing a presence in Central Asia in 2010,” he concluded.