Qatar bolstering wealth fund team to diversify portfolio
DUBAI (REUTERS) - Qatar's sovereign wealth fund, one of the world's most aggressive investors, is hiring senior bankers and industry executives to lessen the fund's reliance on Europe and diversify its investment portfolio, sources familiar with the plan said.
Under newly appointed chief executive Ahmed Al-Sayed, the US$100 billion (S$127 billion)-plus sovereign fund is scouting for opportunities in Asia and the United States. The hiring reflects a long-term objective of geographically balancing a portfolio, which is now nearly 80 per cent exposed to Europe, the sources said.
Mr Al-Sayed, known as a savvy negotiator and aggressive dealmaker, took the helm at Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) in July, when the newly crowned emir, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad al-Thani, shook up the investment vehicle as part of his restructuring of the Qatari state on his father's abdication.
Mr Al-Sayed is one of the very few senior executives who are not part of the ruling family in Qatar to take helm at a major state-owned entity in the Gulf state. Previously, QIA was run by the emir's cousin, former prime minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim al-Thani, who built up big stakes in European business and real estate.