Qatar on the hunt again

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Qatar on the hunt again
The chief executive and chairman of the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) Sheik Hamad bin Jassem bin Jabr Al Thani speaking during World Economic Forum in Davos. The QIA is believed to be actively seeking new acquisition targets across the world to further diversify its portfolio of assets.Photo-WEF

The Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) is believed to be actively seeking new acquisition targets across the world to diversify its already growing portfolio of assets.

A new report by the KPMG, revealing investment trends of sovereign wealth funds (SWF’s) in UAE, Qatar and Kuwait, highlights how QIA has developed a “multi-dimensional” investment strategy. The fund has acquired a significant number of trophy assets in industries like hospitality, real estate, financial services, commodities and retail. With continued global economic uncertainty, these sovereign wealth funds are playing a key role to strengthen the country’s economy.

Buoyed by high oil prices, Qatar has chased investments in Greece, Spain, Germany and France. As Europe makes a slow recovery from the global financial crisis and debt crisis, Qatar has managed to enjoy bargain deals in the market. The QIA has also made investments in large financial houses like Credit Suisse, Barclays, Agricultural Bank of China, Banco Santander Brasil and the London Stock Exchange.

“It is clear that the global challenges of the last three years have forced organizations around the world, including SWFs, to evolve. While the investment objectives in the region have certainly changed, including geographical and sector focus, diversification remains a key and common objective for Middle Eastern SWFs as countries in the region seek to reduce their reliance on energy, and oil and gas prices.” — Vikas Papriwal, head of SWFs and private equity at KPMG

The QIA has focused on making strategic investments in multinational corporations that allows the fund to gain access to key economies in the world. These assets have high brand value and prove to be a profitable investment in the long-term. The fund has also expressed its interest in targeting investments in mineral exploration and extraction in Africa and South America.

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