March 19th, 2008 | Xinhua ICBC, Standard Bank team up on PE
The Industrial and Commercial Bank of China Ltd (ICBC) and Standard
Bank Group will set up a private equity (PE) fund as the two banks try to
boost strategic cooperation, the ICBC said yesterday.
The $1 billion PE fund will invest in entities or projects that focus
on natural resources such as metals, petroleum and natural gas.
The fund will finance and advise firms with operations in China and
Africa and will also invest in other regions around the world, the ICBC
The ICBC and Standard Bank will sponsor the PE fund, each injecting
$200 million into the fund management company and raising another $600
million from third parties.
Jiang Jianqing, chairman of the ICBC, is optimistic about raising the
$600 million. “Many domestic and foreign companies have shown strong
interest in the fund,” Jiang said. “But the project is still subject to
approval from the banking regulator.”
Analysts said the fund management company, with each bank taking a 50
percent stake, indicates their commitment to long-term strategic
The ICBC said the two banks will work together in areas including trade
financing, international settlement, investment funds, commodities,
global markets and investment banking – in China, Africa and other
The two banks have set up a strategic cooperation committee, co-chaired
by ICBC President Yang Kaisheng and Standard Bank CEO Jacko Maree. The
committee aims to strengthen the organization, leadership and
coordination of the two banks’ strategic cooperation.
The ICBC and Standard Bank have named personnel in charge of the six
major areas – the global resources fund, resource banking, investment
banking, corporate banking, international business and global markets.
They’ve also established working teams where needed to enhance cooperation
on specific projects.
A strategic cooperation office has also been set up to facilitate
coordination and communication, monitor project progress and to report to
Employees will also be seconded by both sides to bring about onsite
participation and foster cooperation.
On March 3, the ICBC acquired a 20 percent stake in Standard Bank,
Africa’s largest lender, marking the beginning of strategic cooperation
between the two.