APG is joining its forces with NPS (National Pension Service of South Korea) in the field of asset management. Both parties will mainly cooperate on investments in large international projects in the field of infrastructure and commercial real estate. The collaboration with the South Korean sector partner enables multiple economies of scale for APG that will lead to the ultimate objective: providing maximum pension value to customers of the pension fund and the participant.
NPS is the wide-ranging provider of social benefits in South Korea. The scheme is open to all South Korean employees, employers and self-employed persons. 22 million working people are currently contributing to the fund. The company also offers services in the field of financial planning and has close relationships with the government. NPS manages USD 600 billion in assets at the moment and the expectation is for this amount to grow until 2024 to USD 1 trillion.
The South Korean asset manager is not unknown to APG. The asset managers cooperated in two major investments this year. They acquired a share in the leading toll road operator Brisa last April and an investment in Scape Australia, market leader in student housing in Australia, followed more recently.
“A collaboration with like-minded peers, such as NPS, ensures attractive investment returns for APG and our customers in pension funds and participants”, says Ronald Wuijster, member of the Board of Directors and responsible for asset management. “By cooperating, both parties gain access to new and attractive investment opportunities. Investments that are more difficult to realize by APG independently and at higher costs.”
APG enriches its investment portfolio with this partnership, but it also gives both APG and NPS greater influence and voting rights in the business operations. Ronald: “It enables us, for example, to bring up our ambitions in the field of sustainability even more assertively.”
Knowledge exchange is an additional important goal of the collaboration. Ronald: “Both APG and NPS have an excellent track record when it comes to investing in real assets. We have a great deal to learn from one another. We will utilize each other’s expertise in the time to come. In this context, you should think about, for instance, the temporary exchange of investment experts.”
The alliance with NPS fits, according to Ronald, a trend in which large investors are seeking each other more often in order to increase their operational effectiveness. “We expect APG to enter into more of such partnerships in the future.”