OCBC, Lion Global upsize private-equity fund by 40% to $550m on strong investor demand

The Lion-OCBC Capital Asia Fund I, L.P. will invest in small and medium companies in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and China.
The Lion-OCBC Capital Asia Fund I, L.P. will invest in small and medium companies in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and China.PHOTO: ST FILE

SINGAPORE - OCBC Bank and its asset management subsidiary Lion Global Investors said Thursday that their first private-equity fund with outside investors was closed successfully after being upsized by almost 40 per cent to $550 million from $400 million fund on strong demand.

The Lion-OCBC Capital Asia Fund I, L.P. will invest in small and medium companies in Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and China.

Among the investors are insurance companies, regional banks, sovereign wealth funds and high net worth individuals (HNWIs), including customers of OCBC Bank's private banking subsidiary, Bank of Singapore.

It took nine months to secure investor subscription after the fund was launched in late November 2014.

A fund of this size would typically take more than a year to close, the companies said.

Said Daniel Kwan, head of OCBC Bank's private equity investment unit Mezzanine Capital Unit MCU): "We introduced this fund to meet growing interest in alternative assets from our market partners and high net worth customers in Bank of Singapore.

"Investors in the fund were attracted by the superior returns that MCU has consistently delivered for OCBC of more than 20 per cent internal rate of return in the past six years as its private equity unit, as well as by the fund's unique positioning as a bank-sponsored investment fund."

Mr Gerard Lee, chief executive officer of Lion Global Investors, noted that alternative investments have found a growing audience among those seeking alpha solutions in an uncertain global economic environment.

He added the fund will open doors for Lion Global to reach out to investors who have shown increasing interest in alternative strategies.