Surbana Jurong expands its footprint in Africa and takes stake in Google X spin out firm

SINGAPORE - Surbana Jurong has further expanded its international footprint by investing in a 20 per cent equity stake in CITICC (Africa), a US$300 million (S$426.2 million) investment platform set up between IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and Chinese multinational construction and engineering company CITIC Construction.

Surbana Jurong was formed from the merger of Surbana International Consultants Holdings and Jurong International Holdings in June this year. The International Finance Corporation (IFC) promotes private sector investment in developing countries.

The stake in CITICC (Africa) will pave the way to potentially develop 30,000 affordable homes in Sub-Saharan Africa in the next five years, Surbana Jurong announced in a press conference on Wednesday morning (Nov 11).

Surbana Jurong will also be taking a US$9.25 million equity stake in FLUX Factory, a San Francisco based software company that is a spin out from Google X.

Google X is a development lab by Google dedicated to making breakthrough technological advancements in areas including self-driving cars, Google Glass and drone deliveries.

Surbana Jurong said the investment in FLUX Factory will help to grow its sustainable and building design capabilities.

Said Mr Wong Heang Fine, group chief executive of Surbana Jurong: "The equity stakes in these two international entities is a continuation of our strategy to grow as a global firm that has solid presence in emerging markets while incorporating the most effective and efficient technology to augment our town planning and urban solutions capabilities."

"We have a strong presence in Africa, having done projects in nine African countries. With the stake in CITICC (Africa), we will significantly increase our market access into Africa, particularly in affordable housing."