|Bid||198.50 x 214900|
|Ask||198.48 x 10000|
|Day's Range||193.64 - 199.76|
|52 Week Range||170.46 - 219.05|
|Beta (3Y Monthly)||0.83|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||10.88|
|Forward Dividend & Yield||9.00 (4.57%)|
|1y Target Est||213.69|
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- A 12,000-foot-high Alpine mountain range and 250 miles separate AMS AG’s base in the Austrian town of Premstaetten and Osram Licht AG’s Munich headquarters. The Austrian firm must overcome much bigger obstacles in its attempted takeover of the German lighting-maker. After months of toing and froing, AMS finally tabled a 3.7 billion-euro ($4.1 billion) approach for Osram late on Sunday. The deal would trump a 3.4 billion-euro bid from Bain Capital and Carlyle Group LP that Osram has already accepted. From that perspective, it looks very attractive to the German company’s investors. The approach offers a glimmer of hope: the Bain-Carlyle bid appears dead in the water after being rejected by Allianz Global Investors, Osram’s biggest shareholder, last week.The difficulty is on the AMS side. Chief Executive Officer Alexander Everke hasn’t yet done enough to warrant lifting the company’s debt ratios to levels well above most peers in exchange for returns in the near term that are likely to be below capital costs, based on planned synergies and analyst earnings forecasts. The company is confident returns will exceed costs in the second year after the deal completes. That will be contingent on hitting some ambitious savings targets. In Everke’s three years at the helm, AMS has generated significantly lower returns for shareholders than the Philadelphia Stock Exchange Semiconductor Index, despite major outlays on acquisitions and manufacturing capacity. Sure, AMS has improved its sensor offering and, after a bumpy few years, might finally be starting to demonstrate returns on that spending.But integrating Osram, with its 24,300 employees globally, is a significantly greater challenge than AMS’s biggest acquisition to date: The 2016 deal to buy Heptagon, with just 830 employees, for $570 million.To fund the takeover, AMS plans a 1.5 billion-euro equity increase, underwritten by UBS Group AG and HSBC Holdings Plc, which 50% of shareholders will need to approve at an extraordinary general meeting in the fourth quarter. In return, it will get a company whose core automotive market is shrinking.The offer is a gamble on carmakers adopting more and smarter sensor technology for the vehicles they are still able to sell. Osram’s strongest business has traditionally been car headlamps, but in recent years it has expanded into different parts of the optical spectrum, such as infra-red. AMS is optimistic that it can package those products with its sensors to work in autonomous cars (which might need laser-based environmental sensors) and for in-cabin sensing (to tell, for example, if the driver has fallen asleep).It seems a hell of a lot of upfront risk given that it’s unclear what kind of sensors autonomous cars will need when they hit the roads on a significant scale in perhaps a decade’s time. AMS was unwise to invest so heavily in smartphone sensors when it did. But the automotive sensor market is not the best way to diversify.\--With assistance from Chris Hughes.To contact the author of this story: Alex Webb at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephanie Baker at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Alex Webb is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering Europe's technology, media and communications industries. He previously covered Apple and other technology companies for Bloomberg News in San Francisco.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- AMS AG re-entered the battle for Osram Licht AG with a 3.7 billion euros ($4.1 billion) offer, days after a major shareholder rejected a lower bid by rivals for the German light and sensor maker.Osram soared as much as 11% Monday, following the weekend approach from AMS that values the target at 38.50 euros a share. That compares with the 35 euros-a-share from private-equity firms Bain Capital and Carlyle Group, thrown into jeopardy last week when top investor, Allianz Global Investors, rejected it as too low.The new offer is in line with an earlier bid that Austrian sensor maker AMS mooted but then withdrew almost a month ago.Osram “raised valid concerns in the past, and I think with the offer we provided them yesterday, we answered all their concerns,” AMS Chief Executive Officer Alexander Everke said in a call with reporters on Monday. “We have been looking at Osram for a long time.”AMS shares fell 8.7% in Zurich. Osram traded at 35.09 euros as of 9:07 a.m. in Frankfurt.AMS is in regular contact with investors, including Allianz, Everke said on the call. Allianz is a shareholder of both companies, holding about 0.38% in AMS and 9.3% of Osram, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.Osram became a takeover target after a series of profit warnings and a public spat over strategy with Siemens AG, which spun off the division in 2013. Its earnings have suffered because of the company’s exposure to the automotive industry, which accounts for over half of its revenue.Carmakers and suppliers are grappling with shrinking demand in China and Europe and the expensive transition to electric cars. Investors also lost confidence in the ability of CEO Olaf Berlien and management to turn the company around. The stock has lost more than half its value since peaking in early 2018.“This counter bid will test how keen the private-equity consortium is for the Osram asset as AMS has now secured financing to offer 10% more per share,” Morgan Stanley analyst Lucie Carrier said in a note.If AMS were successful in its takeover attempt, it would sell off Osram’s digital division that makes lighting controls for use in horticultural and medical systems, among others. The company would also not touch Osram’s collective bargaining agreements for five years, according to the statement.(Updates with AMS CEO comment in sixth paragraph)\--With assistance from Eyk Henning.To contact the reporter on this story: Oliver Sachgau in Munich at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at firstname.lastname@example.org, John BowkerFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
A takeover offer from private equity firms Bain and Carlyle for Germany's Osram is too low, the SdK group representing small shareholders said on Friday. The SdK said it also held shares in Osram and would not tender them.
Announcement of Periodic Review: Moody's announces completion of a periodic review of ratings of ALLIANZ Argentina Compania de Seguros S.A. New York, August 08, 2019 -- Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") has completed a periodic review of the ratings of ALLIANZ Argentina Compania de Seguros S.A. and other ratings that are associated with the same analytical unit. The review was conducted through a portfolio review in which Moody's reassessed the appropriateness of the ratings in the context of the relevant principal methodology(ies), recent developments, and a comparison of the financial and operating profile to similarly rated peers.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- The news about the trade war gets worse by the day. The same goes for the auto industry. That makes the attempt to squeeze a higher price for automotive lighting group Osram Licht AG one of the boldest activist interventions in recent M&A history.Allianz Global Investors thinks the 4 billion-euro ($4.5 billion) offer is at a “knock-down” price and says it is minded to reject it. The technicalities of this transaction mean the refusenik, with a 10% holding, is in a strong position to kill the deal. Bain Capital and Carlyle Group need owners of 70% of Osram’s shares to accept to get the takeover financed. The large cohort of individual investors and passive funds on the register had already made that a challenging hurdle.The price is certainly underwhelming. Between late March, when Osram issued a profit warning, and the deal being agreed in July, the shares traded at an average of 28.81 euros. The offer is 22% more than that. Allow for the bid speculation that was supporting the stock, and the premium is more like 30%, a more typical top-up. But the shares were trading for far more two years ago.The offer values Osram at almost 10 times estimated Ebitda for 2020, a valuation it last commanded in 2017. The snag is that the weather today is a better indicator of the weather tomorrow than the weather two years ago. Other suppliers to the auto industry, such as Germany’s Contintental AG, have been reeling from slowing demand.Osram’s managers don’t have a plan of their own to lift the stock to the offer level. If the bid fails, they would have a major task on their hands to rebuild credibility. There would have to be a new management team and an attempt to form a new strategy.It is quite something that Allianz is prepared to risk that outcome. This may be a ploy to get Bain and Carlyle to raise their offer despite the fact that the case for buying Osram seems, if anything, to have weakened in recent weeks. It’s possible that they could pay a higher price and still reap double-digit returns by restructuring Osram out of the public eye. But those profits would be less certain.Bain and Carlyle cannot lower the acceptance threshold to get the deal over the line without having to fund the whole thing in equity. That would defeat the whole idea of a leverage buyout. So they will have to pay more for an asset that has become more risky. Rival suitor AMS AG has yet to lay down an offer that would force the issue. Private equity might blink first – but it is a big gamble.To contact the author of this story: Chris Hughes at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Edward Evans at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Chris Hughes is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering deals. He previously worked for Reuters Breakingviews, as well as the Financial Times and the Independent newspaper.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
● Osram shares fell after Allianz Global Investors, the German lightmaker’s biggest shareholder, said it would reject a €3.4bn takeover offer from private equity firms Bain and Carlyle. Allianz, which owns a 9.3 per cent stake in Osram, said it was “minded not to accept the offer [at] a knock-down price”. Without Allianz’s backing, the bid was unlikely to reach a minimum acceptance threshold of 70 per cent, said analysts.
The biggest shareholder in German lighting group Osram Allianz Global Investors, has rejected a 3.4 billion euro ($3.8 billion) takeover offer from private equity firms Bain and Carlyle, saying the shares were worth more. Bain Capital declined to comment. The AllianzGI statement is a setback for Bain and Carlyle, which will want a minimum acceptance of 70 percent of the outstanding shares when the offer period is expected to conclude on Sept. 5.
Investors may have to grapple with the possibility of the once-unthinkable becoming reality - negative U.S. Treasury bond yields, according to money manager Pacific Investment Management Co (PIMCO). Despite their dramatic drop since last week, U.S. Treasury yields remain among the highest for developed economies as the United States continues to enjoy its longest-ever expansion. Most German and Japanese bond yields are currently in negative territory.
(Bloomberg) -- Want the lowdown on European markets? In your inbox before the open, every day. Sign up here.Allianz SE got a boost from bond giant Pimco in the second quarter as its main insurance businesses felt the pinch of low interest rates.Pacific Investment Management Co. attracted 23 billion euros ($25 billion) in third-party inflows in the second quarter, boosting assets overseen for outside clients at Allianz’s asset management arm to a record. Operating profit from non-life insurance, its largest unit, fell 5% from a year earlier, missing estimates for a gain in a company-compiled survey as it made less from investments.Chief Executive Officer Oliver Baete has been looking to deals for growth as an abundance of capital and the prospect of continued low interest rates hurts investment returns. While big transactions have proven difficult to come by, Allianz in May agreed to buy two insurance businesses in the U.K. in deals valued at a combined $1 billion, transforming the firm into the second-biggest general insurer in the country.Finance chief Giulio Terzariol said with interest rates expected to remain low for longer and equity markets poised for a “correction,” the company remains cautious for now.‘Even Lower’“We are preparing for an environment which might be a little bit tougher than we had before,” Terzariol said in an interview on Bloomberg TV. Rates “can go even lower. My working assumption is they’re not” rising.The life and health unit, the second-biggest, posted an almost 15% jump in operating profit, even as it’s being hit by the prospect of lower interest rates for longer. The business will probably see a dent in revenue after Banco Santander SA in June agreed to pay Allianz 937 million euros to buy it out of an insurance joint venture in Spain. The deal will knock Allianz out of the top 10 life insurers in Spain, an unusual position for the German company.Low, or even negative, bond yields aren’t the only challenge facing CEO Baete. The 54-year-old also has to fend off competition from passive fund managers. Allianz’s two big asset-management divisions are both active investors.While Pimco benefited from strong net inflows, Allianz Global Investors saw clients pull 3 billion euros during the quarter. Allianz’s total assets under management, including the money it looks after for its insurance businesses, rose to 2.2 trillion euros.Ripe for ConsolidationAsset management is another area ripe for consolidation, as the flight to cheaper, passive products puts pressure on fees, particularly at purely active managers such as Allianz. Earlier this year, the company explored a combination of its asset-management division with DWS Group, the money-management arm of Deutsche Bank AG, people familiar with the matter said at the time.Germany’s biggest bank also spoke to other companies about a potential merger, Bloomberg has reported, but the discussions appear to have stalled for now as the bank focuses on its biggest overhaul in recent history.(Updates with comments from CFO starting in fourth paragraph.)To contact the reporter on this story: Will Hadfield in London at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Shelley Robinson at firstname.lastname@example.org, Christian Baumgaertel, Andrew BlackmanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
German insurer Allianz on Friday posted a better-than-expected 13.5% rise in net profit in the second quarter from a year earlier and confirmed its full-year profit target. Net profit of 2.265 billion euros ($2.51 billion) compared with the 2.03 billion euro profit forecast by analysts in a Refinitiv poll and is up from 1.995 billion euros a year ago. Results were helped by a one-off effect in Allianz's life and health division, namely the deferring of expenses incurred for new or renewed policies in the U.S.
French insurer AXA said its net profit fell 17% in the first half of the year after booking charges related to the valuation of its remaining stake in Axa Equitable Holdings and the mark-to-market valuation of derivatives. AXA, the second-largest European insurer after Allianz , said its net profit fell to 2.33 billion euros ($2.6 billion) from 2.8 billion during the same period a year ago. Analysts polled by Refinitiv expected a net profit of 3.81 billion euros and a mean revenue of 55.21 billion euros.
(Bloomberg) -- Jonathan Sudharta was a brawl-prone, unremarkable student who played in a rock band. Friends of his father, a self-made tycoon, feared he’d one day take over the family medical business and ruin it.Instead, in 2016, at the age of 34, Sudharta co-founded a startup that attracted the interest of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and today becomes the organization’s first ever equity investment in an online health-care platform.His creation, Halodoc, is trying to address one of the biggest problems in medicine: In a world with too few doctors and hundreds of millions of people without proper access to clinics, how can people get the diagnosis and drugs they need quickly and cheaply?“Someone is going to solve patient-centric, 21st century, primary health care and we think that Halodoc has a huge potential to do that,” said David Rossow, London-based founding partner of the Gates Foundation’s Strategic Investment Fund.Microsoft Corp.’s co-founder has invested heavily to fight specific diseases, including a pledge of $1 billion to end malaria. Yet the challenge for much of the developing world is how to get health care day to day, not just for a single illness. About 40 million people use Halodoc’s app or website to connect with more than 22,000 licensed doctors in Indonesia for an online consultation. Sudharta said in an interview he is aiming to expand that by 2020 to 100 million people -- more than one in three Indonesians. Once they have a diagnosis, patients can buy medicine through the app from one of more than 1,000 pharmacies and get it speedily delivered by motorcycle or scooter.Halodoc, valued at about $350 million according to people familiar with its accounts, also offers home blood and urine tests by a visiting medical attendant, with the result sent via the app. Patients can use the website if needed to book face-to-face appointments with a doctor at a hospital.Few places could get more benefit from a new mobile-based health care system than Indonesia. With a population of 260 million spread across more than 17,000 islands, it has only two physicians for every 10,000 people, behind the 8 in India, and 26 in the U.S., according to the World Bank.Despite efforts by the government, infrastructure and services remain largely overwhelmed, with traffic snarls in major cities like Jakarta and public facilities often operating beyond capacity. People can make a living by queuing for others.A 20-minute drive from Halodoc’s offices, in the Apotik Mahakam pharmacy, customers are either elderly or deliverymen waiting to whisk orders on scooters through the narrow alleys and clogged arteries of the capital. Even with peak-hour traffic crawling at an average 6.2 miles an hour, Halodoc customers can get their pills in a little over half an hour.In the nerve center of the Halodoc operation in central Jakarta one morning this month, some 400 young employees worked in the kind of featureless, chaotic, laptop-filled rooms that are the hallmark of a tech startup. Men in T-shirts and women in headscarves tapped away at keyboards, surrounded by piles of cardboard boxes, medicine delivery bags, flipcharts and stacks of bubble-wrapped chairs that were awaiting a move to larger premises. Below a giant pinboard of staff photos, an unused ping-pong table presented a plateful of snacks.In the next room, half a dozen doctors in white coats sat round a table diagnosing the populace via laptops and mobile phones.The face of a young man with round spectacles and a scar on his right cheek appeared on the phone of Dr. Alia Kusuma, one of the front line GPs. He had fallen from his motorcycle a month ago and was worried about the lasting effect. After a short consultation, Kusuma referred him to a laser treatment specialist.Across the table, Dr. Devi Anneta was following up on the progress of a 51-year-old man who had been hospitalized for high cholesterol, hypertension and joint problems.Halodoc covers the cost of the medical advice from its capital and from commissions on drug sales, lab tests and hospital referrals. A prominent, crossed-out label on the app shows that it will eventually charge upwards of 20,000 rupiah ($1.40) per consultation.Halodoc’s rise reflects the pace of change in Indonesia, the world’s fastest-growing internet economy. Sudharta’s father founded a pharmaceutical materials trading house in 1975 that’s now called Mensa Group and has businesses from making drug ingredients to supplying medical equipment to hospitals. The conglomerate gave the young Sudharta connections to doctors, hospitals and pharmacies, and contacts at the health regulator with whom he could discuss new ideas. While his father’s company didn’t fund Halodoc directly, the startup rents offices in one of Mensa’s buildings.One of Sudharta’s early encounters with medical care was at 13, when he and some school friends got into a fight with kids at a senior school and were beaten mercilessly. The pugilistic boy was sent to the prestigious Hale School in Perth, Australia, before studying commerce at Curtin University, filling the time by playing bass in a band and producing films and concerts for Indonesian diaspora.Back in Indonesia he joined his father’s firm as a trainee, and was sent on his first day to the port with a stack of cash. His job was to hand out a 1,000 rupiah note bonus (about 10 U.S. cents) to each worker carrying a load of shipment.He was upset to see an elderly worker carrying a heavy load, and wanted to give him 5,000 rupiah, but the manager stopped him, saying his action would be detrimental for the company. When the old man wholeheartedly thanked him for the tiny tip, Sudharta realized how privileged he was. He vowed never to take it for granted again.“It was a big slap in my face,” Sudharta, now 37, said in a conference room with a broken red sofa in Halodoc’s offices in Jakarta. “That changed my life.”He went to see Ferry Soetikno, a successful second-generation scion who had expanded his family’s health-care business, PT Dexa Medica. Soetikno, 12 years his senior, told him: focus, start from the beginning and always measure your performance.Sudharta adopted the pseudonym Budi Jonathan to hide his identity and began as a junior medical representative at Mensa, often waiting until past midnight for a chance to pitch drugs to overworked doctors. Over the next 13 years he rose through the company ranks.He didn’t think of starting his own medical business, but would talk to friends about the gaps he saw in Indonesia’s system. One of those friends, Gojek co-founder Nadiem Makarim, pulled him aside one day and said: “‘Why don’t you do it yourself? A startup. Fundraise. Do it properly.’”Gojek, Indonesia’s answer to Uber Technologies Inc., went on to become the country’s most valuable startup, with ride-hailing, food delivery and payments services across the country and now spreading elsewhere in Southeast Asia. It also became a key strategic backer for Halodoc, integrating the app in 2017 into its platform.Makarim’s advice was to focus on helping people where they felt the greatest pain, and Sudharta thought of the countless times he’d seen patients camped out in hospitals to see a doctor for a few minutes and then wait another two hours to get medicine.A year after Halodoc started, Sudharta had another pivotal introduction when he was part of a group of young leaders invited to a lunch with Bill Gates in Seattle. The invitees were asked to dress formally. Sudharta arrived in a business shirt, but removed it just before the meeting with Gates to reveal a red T-shirt emblazoned with Halodoc’s logo.Sudharta left the meeting with the message that if you’re lucky enough to be able to change the world, do good, stay on course and don’t get distracted by the financial rewards.Meanwhile, the Gates’ foundation, which distributes billions of dollars in grants to improve living conditions in developing countries, had been increasingly looking to make direct investments in companies that could help advance its goals. One of its target countries was Indonesia and the investment arm zeroed in on Halodoc.The foundation is joining Halodoc’s so-called extended Series B round of funding with other new contributors Prudential Plc and Allianz SE. They will add to the $65 million Halodoc secured from UOB Venture Management, Singtel Innov8 and Korea Investment Partners in March. Halodoc is only one of dozens of health-tech startups developing apps. Gojek rival Grab has a joint venture with China’s Ping An Good Doctor to provide online services in Southeast Asia, while Indonesian rivals include Alodoktor.What helps Halodoc stand out is the breadth of Sudharta’s vision to cover all aspects of the patient’s experience, all wrapped together with digital payment, said Shane Chesson, founding partner at Singapore-based Openspace Ventures and an early backer of Halodoc.“In rapid time, Haldoc has moved to be one of the best at product development in Indonesia,” he said. For the Gates Foundation, Halodoc is part of its belief that technology can improve access to quality health-care for low-income groups, said the strategic investment fund’s Rossow.“Whether it’s a midwife on a remote island or a pharmacy in a major city or a hospital system, Halodoc’s approach of closing that online-to-offline loop is rare,” he said. “There is huge opportunity for Indonesia to lead the world with some of these innovations.”To contact the authors of this story: Yoolim Lee in Singapore at email@example.comDavid Ramli in Singapore at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Adam Majendie at email@example.com, Peter ElstromFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Moody's Investors Service ("Moody's") has completed a periodic review of the ratings of Allianz SE and other ratings that are associated with the same analytical unit. The review was conducted through a portfolio review in which Moody's reassessed the appropriateness of the ratings in the context of the relevant principal methodology(ies), recent developments, and a comparison of the financial and operating profile to similarly rated peers. This publication does not announce a credit rating action and is not an indication of whether or not a credit rating action is likely in the near future.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- Deutsche Bank AG’s big shrinkage plan runs to more than 4,700 words over 47 pages. Apart from a few passing references sprinkled throughout the announcement, the document devotes just half a page and 115 words to the asset management business specifically. That feels like a missed opportunity.Germany’s biggest bank still owns about 80% of DWS Group GmbH after the fund manager’s initial public offering in March last year. The division is still Deutsche Bank’s most profitable and is expected to remain so in coming years. It expects to make a return on tangible equity of at least 20% by 2022, compared with the 8% target for Deutsche Bank as a whole.DWS, though, has had to trim its ambitions for growing assets under management. Its initial target was for net new money inflows of 3% to 5% annually. After clients pulled money in every quarter of 2018, even a 6% rebound in the first three months of this year leaves the business expecting growth of just 2% to 3% for 2019 as a whole, according to the restructuring plan.If Deutsche Bank is serious in its stated aim of growing DWS into one of the world’s 10 top global asset managers, organic growth will be insufficient. With 704 billion euros ($788 billion) of assets, it doesn’t even make the top 15.The 10% drop in Deutsche Bank’s stock price since the revamp was unveiled shows how skeptical investors remain about the lender’s ability to execute on a plan that will see 18,000 jobs go and cost 7.4 billion euros. So it needs its fund management business to sparkle.For that to happen, DWS needs to bulk up. Talk earlier this year that UBS Group AG was considering a plan to combine DWS with its fund unit before spinning the pair off as a separate entity has helped to fuel a 32% rally in DWS’s shares this year. It appeared that the Swiss bank was willing to let Deutsche Bank control enough of the venture to allow it to continue consolidating the unit’s earnings rather than just its dividends, at least at the outset. Other mooted suitors include German insurer Allianz AG, which could combine DWS with its Pimco business, and Amundi SA, currently Europe’s largest independent asset manager with about $1.7 trillion of assets.But as I wrote in April, the point of listing DWS last year was to free it to make acquisitions using its shares as currency. And in June, DWS Chief Executive Officer Asoka Woehrmann said playing an “active role” in the long-awaited consolidation of the fund management industry was a “personal ambition.”Even as it shrinks its banking footprint, the fund management division is the one part of Deutsche Bank that needs to grow through acquisition. If it wants to achieve its ambitions for DWS, the German lender needs to free the business to embark on a shopping spree. Otherwise, the dream of joining the trillion-dollar club of top 10 asset managers will remain just that – a dream.To contact the author of this story: Mark Gilbert at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Edward Evans at email@example.comThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Mark Gilbert is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering asset management. He previously was the London bureau chief for Bloomberg News. He is also the author of "Complicit: How Greed and Collusion Made the Credit Crisis Unstoppable."For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Allianz Global Investors, one of the largest asset managers in Europe, plans to partner with global start-ups in Hong Kong to expand use of artificial intelligence (AI) in its Asian operations to enhance fund returns, a move in line with government efforts to boost the city's reputation as an innovation hub.AllianzGI's three-day AI Hackathon, held from Tuesday to Thursday in partnership with Cyberport, will allow nine start-ups to pitch to fund management executives on AI solutions to enhance fund investment performance, improve sales and support services.Hong Kong Investment Funds Association chief executive Sally Wong said many fund houses in the city have adopted AI, which is helping to create a growing base of demand for start-ups focused on the fund management industry."More and more fund houses have been deploying AI and big data in the investment management process. It can greatly enhance the ability to analyse a large pool of data from more sources in a more timely fashion. But many key aspects still require human intellectual inputs," Wong said.The winners of the hackathon will be invited to use Hong Kong as a base to help develop AllianzGI's AI platform in Asia. The qualifying start-ups are from New York, London, Paris, Shanghai, Beijing, Poland, Uruguay, and India. One team is from Hong Kong.Desmond Ng Ka-yiu, Asia-Pacific head of Allianz Global Investors. Photo: Xiaomei Chen alt=Desmond Ng Ka-yiu, Asia-Pacific head of Allianz Global Investors. Photo: Xiaomei ChenFinancial Secretary Paul Chan Mo-po said in April that the government would amend the law to make it easier for angel funds and start-ups to set up in Hong Kong."We think AI and disruptive technology will radically change the asset management industry," said Desmond Ng Ka-yiu, Asia-Pacific head of AllianzGI."We are keen to enhance our AI platform with new approaches and strategies. Hosting hackathons is one way we can source solutions and build long-term partnerships with some of the world's leading technology talents," Ng said."We are committed to helping tech start-ups worldwide achieve their ambitions and make a contribution to the asset management industry."George Lam, chairman of the Hong Kong Cyberport Management Company, said international start-ups would have many opportunities in Hong Kong."Hong Kong is an international financial centre so there is a lot of demand for fintech solutions from banks, insurance companies and fund houses. Besides, start-ups can use Hong Kong as a base to expand into the Greater Bay Area and other Asian countries," Lam said at the Hong Kong " Asean Summit 2019 on Monday.This article originally appeared in the South China Morning Post (SCMP), the most authoritative voice reporting on China and Asia for more than a century. For more SCMP stories, please explore the SCMP app or visit the SCMP's Facebook and Twitter pages. Copyright © 2019 South China Morning Post Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved. Copyright (c) 2019. South China Morning Post Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved.
(Bloomberg) -- Creandum, an early investor in Spotify Technology SA and iZettle AB, has raised a 265 million euro ($300 million) fund, in a bid to find and back Europe’s next tech superstars.With offices in Stockholm, Berlin and San Francisco, the venture capital fund returned more than $800 million to investors last year after exits from previous investments, such as Spotify, which went public on the New York Stock Exchange, and Small Giant Games, which was acquired by Zynga Inc.With it’s fifth and latest fund, Creandum will continue to target early-stage investments in so-called seed and A rounds in areas including food, health tech, mobility, fintech as well as logistics, manufacturing software and energy."We try to continue to stay small, despite a chance to raise more money," Johan Brenner, the general partner at Creandum, said in an interview, adding the fund’s backers are comprised of 26 investors, including pension funds, endowments and family offices in Europe, the U.S. and Asia.Creandum turned away some investors to keep the fund small, Brenner says, adding that it would help "to focus on the early stage, where we think the best investments can be made and the best returns can be made for our investors."While a larger fund would allow the firm to make many more small investments, Creandum wouldn’t have the time to support the investments and the management, resulting in lower returns, Brenner said. Creandum said it has already made some investments through the new fund that are yet to be announced.Creandum’s fund size compares to peers that have raised much larger pools of capital. Accel, an early investor in Slack Technologies Inc., in May announced it has raised a $575 million fund aimed at nascent companies in Europe and Israel. While European insurer Allianz SE unveiled in February it was increasing the size of its tech investment fund to 1 billion euros.The Creandum II fund, which started in 2007, has returned about 1,000 percent. The fund in May 2018 sold its stake in iZettle to PayPal Holdings Inc. It was also one of the first institutional investors in Spotify in 2008.(Added context on Creandum II fund.)To contact the reporter on this story: Natalia Drozdiak in Brussels at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Giles Turner at email@example.com, Molly SchuetzFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Aug.16 -- Lucy Macdonald, chief investment officer of global equities at Allianz Global Investors, discusses the volatility in markets this week and what we can expect moving forward. She speaks on “Bloomberg Markets: European Open.”
Insurance group Allianz Global Assistance expects Americans to spend $101.7 billion on summer vacations - more than they have in at least a decade. Daniel Durazo, Allianz Global Assistance USA Director of Marketing and Communications, joins Yahoo Finance's Adam Shapiro, Kristin Myers, and Brian Sozzi to discuss.