Korea Scientists and Engineers Mutual-aid Association (SEMA) has decided to commit $37 million to co-investment funds of US-based StepStone Group and Swiss asset manager Capital Dynamics, as it is increasingly seeking co-investment opportunities with global partners for higher yields.
The $4.5 billion retirement fund will also commit €28 million ($34 million) to a mid-cap private debt fund of French asset manager Tikehau Capital, following a €28 million commitment to a Europe mid-market private debt fund of BlueBay Asset Management LLP late last year.
Yonhap Infomax first reported the news on March 8 and a SEMA source confirmed them. (see Table below)
Tikehau’s debt fund is focused on the continental Europe, with the UK making up just 10% of the portfolio. In comparison, BlueBay’s debt fund is heavily weighted to the UK.
Tikehau Capital, with €13.8 billion in AUM, opened a representative office in Seoul last year as it is expanding its client base into Asia, in particular in South Korea, according to its press release in February.
Capital Dynamics closed its fourth mid-market direct co-investment fund at $383 million in October 2017, its largest co-investment fund.
Meanwhile, SEMA has been increasing infrastructure investments since 2016, targeting public private partnership projects in developed countries for stable returns. It is now considering investing in the UK water supply facilities, Yonhap Infomax added.
Infrastructure was the best-performing asset class for SEMA in 2017 as at end-September.
Last year, its investment assets returned an average 6.28%, above the target of 4.73%, according to Infomax. The 2017 result beat the previous year’s 6.06% which was the highest among South Korean pension and savings funds in 2016.
For portfolio diversification of its swelling assets, SEMA selected Aberdeen Standard Investments in January as a manager of its first separately managed account of multi-asset strategy for around $120 million.
By Daehun Kim
<Edited by Yeonhee Kim>