CHINA - Robeco has teamed with TEDA International - a Chinese private equity company wholly owned by the Tianjin Government - to form a joint venture clean-tech private equity firm.
The fund will invest 50% of its assets in Chinese companies and the remainder in the global markets, said Christiaan Kaptein, assistant to the chief executive of Robeco Hong Kong, Frances Chang. Robeco hopes to raise up to US$500m in the fund, he said.
The fund will have a focus on companies which develop products and technologies that increase the productive use of energy and reduce the impact on the environment.
Robeco decided to partner with the government owned-firm because Tianjin city has a strong reputation for leading China in its push towards a cleaner environment. Since 2005, China has been pushing the use of sustainable energy and has set ambitious goals to promote green-friendly technology and practices, said Kaptein. Tianjin City has been mandated "a reform testing area," and the city has become a center for private equity.
As reported in Global Pensions last week, this joint venture is the most recent move in Robeco's attempt to build its emerging markets presence. (Global Pensions, 18 March 2008) The firm has €111bn (US$145.5bn) in assets under management, with €7.5bn in emerging markets.
Robeco chief executive George Möller said the firm, which often expands its product offering through acquisitions, is also on the lookout for a Chinese listed equity manager to help round out its Asian product offering.
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