In this edition of Mingtiandi’s regional roundup, a former Goldman Sachs banker says he warned against doing business with Malaysian financier Jho Low, private equity giant Blackstone emerges as a possible bidder for an Aussie casino empire, and Singapore’s SPH REIT fends off flak for its failure to disclose management salaries.
Former Goldman Sachs Group banker Roger Ng asked for the foreign bribery case against him to be dismissed, saying he “warned” the bank not to do business with Malaysian financier Jho Low.
Ng, who says he told Goldman that Low was “not to be trusted”, is facing trial next year on charges of bribery and money-laundering conspiracy. He is accused of helping Malaysia’s former prime minister Najib Razak and others embezzle at least $2.7 billion from the 1Malaysia Development Berhad fund, known as 1MDB. Low is accused of masterminding the scheme. Read more>>
The Crown Resorts saga could end with a deal after all.
Regulators have suspended the Australian casino operator’s gaming licence for its new luxury Sydney complex. As the company and billionaire James Packer consider their options, private equity firm Blackstone looks well-suited to be a buyer.
Delaying the December opening of the $1.6 billion waterfront property raises the spectre of authorities withholding the licence altogether. The company is trying to appease them, by shaking up its board, pay practices and corporate culture. It also vowed to stop working with unregulated junkets that bring high rollers from China. Read more>>
The manager of SPH REIT on Monday defended its decision not to disclose the salaries of its key management personnel in the trust’s latest annual report, in response to a query from the Singapore Exchange.
In its query, SGX noted that SPH REIT had not complied fully with a provision in the corporate governance code addressing the disclosure of remuneration for key management personnel. Read more>>
A private equity fund backed by Thailand’s Chiaravanont family, among others, is likely to acquire a residential development in Bangkok following the close of a maiden fund worth $120 million.
Founded by Schwin Chiaravanont and Kris Panijpan, 9 Basil is the Southeast Asia-focused investment arm of Bangkok-based Blueprint Forest and is targeting the residential development, a distressed asset, in its initial foray into real estate. Read more>>
Commercial office spaces in India have seen some improvement in new leasing over the preceding quarters, according to Embassy Office Parks REIT, as some occupiers slowly return to workplaces after the nation lifted lockdown curbs. But the average demand over previous years is still significantly lower.
“Most corporate real estate executives of our tenants are in a ‘pause and assess’ phase,” Mike Holland, chief executive at India’s first publicly listed real estate commercial investment trust, told BloombergQuint in an interview. “When COVID came, there was a pause, there was a focus on making sure that the business continuity was there, people were working from home. And then they moved to the assessment stage. How are we going to respond as an occupier in the coming months and years?” Read more>>
There are growing concerns that a market correction may be on the cards next year for Asia-Pacific real estate, which has thus far been resilient amid the coronavirus pandemic, particularly when compared to Western markets.
A regional forecast report by non-profit education and research institute Urban Land Institute and PwC released on Tuesday noted that the COVID-19 outbreak has had a limited impact on local real estate markets this year. Read more>>
UBS believes China will become its global financial technology hub and bring new vitality to its global operations.
Committed to building a fintech ecosystem, the global wealth manager invests about $3.5 billion a year in technology.Its recent virtual 2020 Quant Conference in China pulled together intelligence from professionals and students from around the world to strengthen exchanges and collaboration to drive the transformation and upgrading of the financial industry through fintech. Read more>>