Metalloinvest invests RUB 52 billion in eco-efficient tailings storage facility at Lebedinsky GOK
HIMA Expands its Asia Pacific Operations with Presence through New Taiwan Office
Superland announced annual results for 2023 Net profit
Digital Economy Summit 2023: Asia’s Innovation and Technology Flagship Event Returns to Hong Kong
SCE CM Developed Steadily in 2022 GFA Under Management Grew by 14.8% YoY
Hang Lung Properties and LVMH Group Launch Common Charter: 20 Actions to Accelerate Sustainability Progress in 2023
Singapore Accounting Firm RMS Reaffirms Commitment To Help Businesses Stay Compliant With Refreshed Brand Identity And Website
New Generation of Malaysians Shop Value-Based Online
Enjoy Up to S$500 Off at HipVan Singapore this Hari Raya 2023
Victory Securities obtains SFC approval to manage investment funds that comprise up to 100% virtual assets
CICC hosts the China-Japan Finance and Economic Forum in Tokyo
China International Capital Corporation ("CICC, 601995.SH, 3908.HK"), successfully held the China-Japan Finance and Economic Forum in Tokyo on 24th March, 2023. Hundreds of investors across financial areas have attended the forum. In the opening speech, Dr CHU Gang, Chief Operating Officer of CICC, presented the business strength of CICC and highlighted the influence of China-Japan cooperation in the capital market. "Japan is not only the third largest economy, but also the second largest developed economy, with numerous leading Japanese institutions and companies operating worldwide. Both China and Japan have large capital markets full of dynamic financial players, and the role of CICC Japan is to bridge the two markets and support institutions and corporates to identify opportunities for mutual benefits and facilitate transactions on behalf of our clients." In another speech, Mr Eiji TANAKA, CEO of CICC Japan, said that Japanese investors expect to have an increased understanding of the Chinese market. And he believes the Company can assist clients in building a greater perception and well managing the assets with CICC's strong business expertise and broad networks. At the forum, external experts and CICC representatives shared profound observations and insightful views on the economy, markets and various financial trends. These bring value to institutional and retail participants' investment portfolios and business strategies. The forum focused on the key issues and opportunities that China, Japan, and Asia facing, covering areas such as macroeconomics, investment strategies, industry trends, and business dynamics, engaging with more than 30 speakers from China and Japan's policy, business, and academic fields through in-depth presentations and discussions on regional and global economic policies, industry and financial market trends. The topics covered "Outlook for China-Japan Economic and Finance Co-operation", "Outlook for China-Japan Economic and Finance Co-operation", "2023 Post-COVID Asian Economic Outlook", "Implications from NPC & CPPCC 2023", "Aging Population and Financial Planning", "Global Supply Chain Restructuring and its Implication to Asia", "China's New Economy and the Future", "Carbon Neutrality". At the FICC parallel forum, analysts from CICC delivered keynote speeches on China Bond Market Outlook 2023 and Investment Strategy and RMB FX Outlook 2023. Meanwhile, top-notch specialists from both home and abroad participated in panel discussions to share and exchange views centering on topics such as ESG Investment Opportunities in Asia and Cross-border Securities Investment Outlook. CICC and industry experts created a unique opportunity for all the attendees to have face-to-face communications. At the forum, CICC Fixed Income, Commodities and Currency Department (FICC) officially launched its FICC APP in Japan's iOS App store to serve Japanese users. As an online portal of market insights and in-depth research views, CICC FICC APP now has over 20,000 registered users worldwide. The forum also aimed to expand CICC's business influence in Japan and support the Company in seizing the accelerating cross-border capital flow between China and Japan. By growing its business activities in Japan, CICC will continue strengthening its dialogues with regional public sectors, enterprises, financial institutions and research institutions, promoting international capital market cooperation, and facilitating cross-border capital flows.
Vingroup named "Best Issuer for Sustainable Finance"
Vingroup has just been named "The Best Issuer in Sustainable Finance in 2022". At the same time, Vingroup and subsidiary VinFast also jointly received the "Best Green Loan" award from The Asset Triple-A Country Awards. With these two prestigious awards, Vingroup has affirmed its pioneering role in sustainable investment and international finance. The Asset Triple-A Country Awards is one of the region's leading prestigious financial awards with a history of more than 20 years, attracting the participation of major issuers and financial institutions from 18 Asian countries. The awards are held annually, with an objective and independent evaluation process by a council of leading international finance, banking and capital markets professionals. Overcoming many candidates, Vingroup was awarded the "Best Issuer for Sustainable Finance in 2022" award, a prestigious award recognizing the commitment to sustainable finance and implementing effective activities towards the United Nations' 17 sustainable development goals. In addition to the "Best Issuer in Sustainable Finance in 2022", Vingroup and VinFast were also honored in the category of "Best Green Loan" for a US$500 million syndicated term loan (including US$400 million for Vingroup and US$100 million for VinFast). Although this is the first syndicated green loan financing from Vietnam, Vingroup and VinFast drew strong interest from the market very quickly, allowing the borrowers to increase the total facility amount from $300 million to $500 million, marking a new milestone in the Group's international fund raising track record. Mr. Nguyen Viet Quang, Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Vingroup said: "The Asset Triple-A's award affirms Vingroup's prestige in the international capital market, as well as our long-term commitment to sustainable development in Vietnam. It also serves as a vote of confidence from international investors in the Vietnamese capital markets and particularly Vingroup and VinFast." Recognitions awarded to Vingroup and VinFast demonstrate the partnership and trust from international financial institutions and lenders in our sustainability efforts. Most prominently, VinFast aims to become a global smart electric vehicle manufacturer to promote green private and public passenger transportation in Vietnam and our international markets.
Young Malaysian small business owners drive up tech focus
Malaysian small businesses are upbeat about their business and the economy. Meanwhile, young business owners are driving an increasing focus on technology and innovation by local small businesses. These are some of the findings from a new regional survey by one of the world's largest professional accounting associations. CPA Australia's latest Asia-Pacific Small Business Survey shows 72.2 per cent of Malaysian small businesses expect to grow in 2023, compared to 54.6 per cent that grew last year. This trend is being driven by an improving economy and more small businesses grasping the benefits of digital technology including e-commerce, supported by new digital payment opportunities. "An increasing focus on e-commerce will position many Malaysian small businesses for future growth," Malaysia Division President Surin Segar FCPA (Aust.) said. The survey found 63.9 per cent earned more than 10 per cent of their revenue from online sales in 2022. Consistent with this, almost three-quarters (72.9 per cent) received more than 10 per cent of their sales through digital payment technologies such as GrabPay. Small businesses are achieving strong returns from technology spending, with 53 per cent reporting this investment in 2022 improved their profitability. The financial gains available are helping drive the adoption of new technology. "Nearly all Malaysian small businesses use social media. Businesses were more likely to invest in mobile phone applications than any other technology." Over a third (34.1 per cent) said they will introduce a new product, process or service to Malaysia or the world in 2023, up from 25.3 per cent last year. "Small businesses are ready to innovate in 2023. This innovative culture should support long-term growth and improve the competitiveness of Malaysia's small business sector. "The appetite to innovate is hugely encouraging. The high percentage of Malaysians under 40 running small businesses is a contributing factor." Younger business owners surveyed were more likely to run businesses that are growing, creating jobs, innovating, using emerging technologies and exporting. "To harness the entrepreneurial spirit of Malaysia's many young small business owners, we want to see policymakers incentivise them to access professional advice. "The increased use of technology raises cyber risks all businesses need to be aware of. Almost half (48 per cent) of small businesses reviewed their cybersecurity in the last six months. While this result was up from 2021, we want to see that figure climb higher."
Velocity Global Announces New Financial Metrics; Crosses $200M ARR
Velocity Global, the leading provider of global talent solutions, today announced new financial metrics and corporate momentum to include: Crossed the $200M ARR threshold. More than 40% organic growth YoY. Profitable YTD in 2023, as it has been seven of the last nine years. Nearly 1,500 customers, including Databricks, Penguin Random House, Linksys, International Justice Mission, Crunchbase, Dragonfly, and Schwans International. Enhancements to the employee and employer experience through partnerships with companies like Upflex and strategic integrations with leading HR technologies like BambooHR, Greenhouse, HiBob, and Namely. Platform updates including automated quoting and faster, self-service employment contract creation, which is already helping early customers experience 50% faster onboarding times as well as a forthcoming simplified UI to improve the customer experience. The increase in demand for technology platforms that make it possible to compliantly hire and pay talent around the world has provided significant tailwinds for Velocity Global. That demand has been accelerated by economic uncertainty and other macroeconomic issues that make remote work, global expansion, and access to talent mission critical. Earlier this month, nearly 20% of Velocity Global’s client base was directly affected by Silicon Valley Bank, accounting for hundreds of millions of dollars in payroll. The good news: redundancies built directly into the Global Work Platform - alongside a strong balance sheet and ample liquidity - allowed us to ensure our clients' payroll would not be disrupted. “Velocity Global’s growth is a testament to our team’s commitment in building a solution that is defining the future of work, while navigating the complexities of compensating employees across the world in a compliant way,” said Ben Wright, CEO and co-founder. “In our industry, being right is just as important as being fast, and that’s reinforced by 70% of our customers who cite compliance measures as to why they chose our platform. The fact is that recent developments in the financial sector reminded us that building redundancies around payroll and compliance are non-negotiable. We are building a platform that isn’t just reactionary to the industry, but pioneering its future.” Other Notable Milestones & Company Updates: (1) Key Technology & Product Hires: Across design, engineering and technology including Winnie Wong, Vice President of Design, Kumar Ramanathan, Vice President of Engineering & Chief Architect, and Chuck Kim, Vice President of Cloud and Corporate Infrastructure. (2) Global Expansion: Offering support in more than 185 countries with more than 7,500 supported employees across more than 60 entities around the world. This includes recent additions like Ghana, Egypt, Uruguay, Ukraine, and Argentina, with several more planned for Q2. (3) Customers: Velocity Global continues to expand its enterprise clientele with more than a dozen major universities, 50+ global retail brands, dozens of nonprofits including three NGO’s, and thousands of other large companies in every major industry spanning rocket builders to amusement parks to publishers to technology companies to cutting-edge investment firms. (4) New Partnerships: With Upflex, whose platform gives people access to 10,000 locations from more than 1,250 providers - including Wework, Industrious, and The Office Group, Velocity Global now has the capabilities to offer non-traditional benefits options for clients and supported employees. (5) Industry Analyst Recognition: Velocity Global was named as a leader in NelsonHall’s Vendor Evaluation & Assessment Tool (NEAT) for global employer of record (EoR) services as well as Everest Group’s PEAK Matrix® Assessment 2022 for employer of record (EoR) solutions. (6) Integrations: New integrations with Bamboo HR, Greenhouse, HiBob, and Namely to source talent, onboard, and manage the workforce, remove the friction of dealing with multiple systems and data transfers. Most companies already use Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) and HR Information Systems (HRIS), so by integrating these into Velocity Global’s EoR solution, Global Work Platform, expanding and maintaining a global workforce becomes as easy as a click away. “We’ve seen double-digit growth in the EoR market over the last few years and expect this growth to continue as the model addresses a very real need for companies to attract and retain top talent anywhere in the world,” said Jeanine Crane-Thompson, Principal HR Analyst at NelsonHall. “As an early player in the industry, Velocity Global stands out with its deep in-country expertise and continued technology innovation providing its customers with peace of mind and speed as it comes to employing talent across the globe.” For more information, visit www.velocityglobal.com
AIA Hong Kong and New World Group’s Humansa sign Memorandum of Understanding
AIA Hong Kong announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding to form a strategic partnership with Humansa, a leading integrated health and wellness management brand under the New World Group#, to collaborate and set up an insurance industry first* one-stop Wellness Centre in Hong Kong. The Centre will provide personalised and diverse health management solutions for the body and mind in the areas of preventive and prediction healthcare, exclusively for AIA Hong Kong's local and Hong Kong visiting high-net-worth customers. The partnership is a landmark step that symbolises a shared vision by the two parties in joining forces to provide customers in the Greater Bay Area (GBA) with excellent value-added health management services in addition to comprehensive insurance protection. Underpinned by a "preventive healthcare approach", the Wellness Centre is the industry's first joint project between an insurance service provider and a health and wellness management organisation. Leveraging Humansa's professional team of health management experts, the Wellness Centre provides personalised and effective health management solutions to support AIA Hong Kong's high-net-worth customers in achieving their health management goals with a keen focus on "wellness nourishment" through balancing the body, mind and soul. With an extremely busy work and daily life, high-net-worth customers often struggle to prioritise their physical and mental wellbeing, and may even be living in a "suboptimal health" state and suffering from conditions such as insomnia and anxiety, while lacking remedies to address the issues. Meanwhile, they are seeing greater importance on managing their physical and mental wellbeing as they believe "health is wealth", and would like to resolve and rectify their "suboptimal health" status, so it does not impact their daily lives and can enhance their long-term physical and mental health. AIA Hong Kong understands that high-net-worth customers value their health and seek high-quality services, yet they lack the time and energy to select quality healthcare resources that best suit their needs. With the establishment of the Wellness Centre dedicated for high-net-worth customers, they can simply visit the Centre to enjoy the industry-leading one-stop comprehensive health management services. Mr. Alger Fung, Chief Executive Officer of AIA Hong Kong & Macau, said, "As an industry leader, 'customer-centricity' has been the cornerstone of AIA Hong Kong's philosophy. Through strategic investments and collaborations with top industry partners who share the same vision, we are committed to building an ecosystem of quality services in the Guangdong-Hong Kong-Macao GBA that integrates physical and mental health as well as wealth and medical protection, as we proactively break the boundaries of insurance to become customers' strongest health and wealth support. We are delighted to be partnering with New World Group's Humansa to take another step closer to our goal of protecting our customers' health through the professional and quality services they provide." Mr. Don So, Chief Executive Officer of Humansa, said, "We are thrilled to be an exclusive strategic partner with AIA on wellness. Humansa is committed to providing leading thoughts and services to the health and wellness industry. Therefore, our partnership marks a significant milestone for us to explore a unique opportunity together to expand our reach and offer first-in-market wellness services for AIA's top customers, starting first with Hong Kong. We firmly believe that this partnership will enable us to deliver high quality service across GBA in the future, paving the way for a successful and mutually beneficial relationship." The Wellness Centre is scheduled to officially open this summer in a prime commercial location on Hong Kong Island, offering AIA Hong Kong's high-net-worth customers an easy access to a distinguished and relaxing wellness experience. Remarks: # Founded in 1970, New World Development Company Limited ("The Group", Hong Kong stock code: 0017) was publicly listed in Hong Kong in 1972 and is a constituent stock of the Hong Kong Hang Seng Index. * As of 22 March 2023
Tradewind Finance Provides Export Factoring Facility for Tiles Trader in Hong Kong
Tradewind Finance has successfully closed a USD 205,000 export factoring facility for a tiles trader in Hong Kong. The funding has enabled the company to improve working capital and develop a diverse portfolio of global buyers. Established almost 15 years ago, the company has been focusing on exporting tiles and natural stones from China to Australia and New Zealand. With high-quality products and an all-in-one service, including design and project monitoring during production, the trader not only appealed to suppliers but it also developed qualified buyers across the world. However, as more buyers requested credit terms, which was different from the original payment term T/T before shipment, the self-financing company found it hard to grow its business. Piled-up account receivables resulted in a significant gap in cash flow, which made it difficult to meet financial obligations for suppliers and caused it to decline orders from new buyers in the USA. Attracted by the 23-year solid track record in trade finance, the client contacted us to ease intense capital pressure. Tradewind's immediate tailor-made funding solutions enabled the trader to accelerate cash flow and reduce trade risks. With the flexible and scalable facility, the company was able to maintain operations, increase business with existing buyers and accept open account orders from new buyers without the fear of a working capital shortage. "The experienced client is a professional in tiles trading. With our timely support, the client received stable access to the working capital they needed to operate efficiently," said Dickson Au, Regional CEO – Far East, at Tradewind Hong Kong. "The client is expected to deliver business growth in the near future and we are honored to grow with our clients."
Jamaican Insurance Broker AIB Taps Novidea
Novidea has been chosen by Jamaica-based insurance broker Allied Insurance Brokers Ltd. (AIB) to implement its born-in-the-cloud, data-driven insurance management platform for Managing General Agents (MGAs). The platform will fully automate AIB’s end-to-end Coverholder processes from Jamaica to the London Market while satisfying all data capture, exchange, processing, compliance, and reporting requirements. This will increase efficiency and productivity for AIB while lowering overhead costs and providing analytics and reporting to help fuel the company’s growth across the Caribbean as a Lloyd’s Coverholder. AIB became an authorized Lloyd’s Coverholder in 2013. That part of the business recently rebranded to A+ Insurance Solutions and provides General Liability, Medical Malpractice, and Personal Accident, including reinsurance coverage on behalf of Lloyd’s syndicates to clients in Jamaica, Antigua, Bahamas, Barbados, Grenada, St. Lucia, Turks and Caicos, and other territories within the Caribbean. They also provide solutions for Directors & Officers Liability, Professional Indemnity, Cyber insurance, and other classes of insurance that are not typically sold by local market insurers. Camile Coore, Technical Manager, AIB, shared: “We are excited about this new partnership and the efficiency and growth potential it will bring to A+ Insurance Solutions. The team will have access to prebuilt reporting and insurance analytics tools that will enhance the visibility of our business and customers. “Additionally, we will be able to focus on value-added tasks instead of utilizing a significant portion of our time in cumbersome manual processes, such as data verification and validation.” Ben Potts, Managing Director, UK, Novidea, said: “We’re delighted to be selected by AIB and look forward to working in partnership to implement our platform to support their London Market needs and global operations and to streamline business processes.” With more than 100 customers in 22 countries, Novidea, the creator of the only born-on-the-cloud, data-driven insurance platform built on Salesforce, is truly global. Its platform enables brokers, agents, and MGA Coverholders to manage the customer insurance journey end-to-end and drive growth across the entire insurance distribution lifecycle. The company achieved a 93 percent year-over-year growth rate in 2022. In 2023, Novidea has already made strategic hires in key growth areas for the business and expanded in multiple geographic regions. Novidea will be at the Insurtech NY 2023 Spring Conference March 29-30. Eric Ayala, managing director of North America for Novidea, will participate in a live panel discussion, “The Zero Sum: The Win-Win Partnership Philosophy," at 1:15 EDT on March 29. Mr. Ayala is available for media briefings while attending the conference.
Kenanga Investment Bank Wins Seven Awards at the Bursa Excellence Awards 2022
Kenanga Investment Bank Berhad ("Kenanga Group" or "The Group") is proud to announce that it has once again been recognised for its exceptional achievements in the equity broking and listed derivatives space at the recent prestigious Bursa Excellence Awards 2022. The Group received multiple accolades including: Best Overall Equities Participating Organisation (Champion) Best Retail Equities Participating Organisation (Champion) Best Online Retail Participating Organisation (Champion) Best Remisier, Margaret Heng (Champion) Best Remisier, Chew Yee Seng (2nd Runner Up) Best Institutional Derivatives Trading Participant (Champion) Best Overall Derivatives Trading Participant (1st Runner Up) For the third year in a row, Kenanga Group was named 'Champion' in the Best Overall Equities Participating Organisation category, building on its previous wins in 2022 and 2021. This outstanding achievement reflects the Group's consistent track record of delivering exceptional services and solutions to its clients, cementing its position as a leading player in the industry. "We are honoured to receive this recognition. It is a testament to the unwavering hard work and dedication of our teams who have pursed excellence and provided exceptional service to our clients, even amidst challenging market conditions," said Datuk Chay Wai Leong, Group Managing Director of Kenanga Group. The Bursa Excellence Awards 2022 brought together and celebrated the achievements of the industry's top-performing brokers and market intermediaries in 24 categories with 54 awards being presented. Themed "Recognising Excellence, Celebrating Success", the event was graced by Tan Sri Abdul Wahid Omar, Chairman of Bursa Malaysia Berhad, and Datuk Muhamad Umar Swift, Chief Executive Officer of Bursa Malaysia Berhad. For more information on Kenanga Group, please visit www.kenanga.com.my
China's High-end Manufacturing Products from Electromechanical Field Show up in Singapore
From March 22 to 24, China's Machinery & Electronics Show in Singapore (CMESS 2023), together with the First International Industrial Cooperation Conference jointly hosted by China Chamber of Commerce for Import and Export of Machinery and Electronic Products (CCCME) and Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce & Industry (SCCCI) will be launched in Hall D &E, B2, Marina Bay Sands in Singapore. A number of central state-owned enterprises and leading private sectors from China are coming to Singapore with their high-end manufacturing products from electromechanical industry this time, so as to open new opportunities for win-win cooperation with international enterprises from the globe. [About CMESS 2023] Exhibition area: 8000m² Exhibitors: 133 Branding Companies Audience: 5000 to 6000 persons Media: 50 [Exhibits] Infrastructure: comprehensive solutions of infrastructure. Home appliances and Innovative products: home appliances and consumer electronics industry, Internet of things, video and audio entertainment, cooking and delicacy, intelligent security, health and other smart home scenes, from "smart home" to "smart community" to "smart city" in the full scene smart life application scheme in the future. Electric power & New energy: PV and other new energy power generation technology and equipment, power transmission and distribution and control equipment, intelligent technology and application of electric power, etc. Industrial machinery: machine tools, agricultural and food machinery, etc. [Spotlights] High-profile exhibition combined with series of forums topic on international industrial cooperation, accompanied with showcases of fruitful technical achievement. Industrial leaders combined with SMEs, jointly shape the international brand image featuring with "Intelligent Manufacturing in China". Supported by China's provincial government from Beijing, Shandong, Guizhou, Fujian, Henan and other official sectors, industrial cluster effect can be enlarged. [The list of exhibitors from China（Partially Only）] China State Construction Engineering Corporation (CSCEC) China Communications Construction Company Limited China National Chemical Engineering Group Corporation Limited Power Construction Corporation Of China（POWER CHINA) Haier Ecovacs Robotics Co., Ltd. JA SOLAR Technology Co., Ltd. LONGi Green Energy Technology Co., Ltd. (LONGi) Zhejiang CHINT Electrics Co., Ltd. Gacia Electrical Appliance Co., Ltd. Guangzhou Industrial Investment Holdings Group Lingdu (Guangdong) Intelligent Technology Development Co., Ltd. Registration for professional visitors and buyers： https://www.gevme.com/cmes2023-register
Gulf Capital Receives Capital Markets Services Licence from the MAS
Gulf Capital, one of the largest and most active Private Equity firms investing from the Gulf Region to the broader Asian markets, has announced today that its Singaporean operation, Gulf Capital Asia Pte Ltd, has been granted a Capital Markets Services License (CMS) by the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS). The license allows the company to conduct regulated activities of fund management, market its funds, and advise on mergers and acquisitions (M&A) and other corporate finance transactions. This new milestone reaffirms Gulf Capital’s commitment to comply with global regulatory frameworks and its pledge to operate with integrity and transparency across all the jurisdictions where it is active in. Gulf Capital is now subjected to regulatory oversight in three key international financial hubs: Abu Dhabi Global Market (ADGM), where its global headquarters are based, Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), and Singapore (MAS). The newly awarded CMS licence from MAS is vital for Gulf Capital to support its portfolio companies with their rapid expansion across Asia, as well as to advise them on potential bolt-on acquisitions and funding needs. Gulf Capital has closed 14 acquisitions and joint ventures across Asia over the last 16 years and has established a long track record of building global leaders operating across Emerging Markets. Using Singapore as a gateway, the Firm is now well positioned to capture the phenomenal growth across the West-East Asia corridor, focusing its investments in resilient, fast-growing sectors of the future, such as technology and fintech, healthcare, business services, consumer, and sustainability. Gulf Capital has closed 38 investments to date, with US$2.4 billion in assets under management (AuM). Gulf Capital was voted as the Best Private Equity Firm in MENA in 2022 by Private Equity International. Dr Karim El Solh, Co-Founder and CEO of Gulf Capital, said: “Receiving this prestigious Capital Markets Services License from the Monetary Authority of Singapore opens a new chapter in Gulf Capital’s rapid expansion across Asia. The new CMS license from MAS will help us meet investors’ increasing demand for more regulated and transparent asset management activities by an established world-class finance centre. Gulf Capital remains steadfast about upholding the highest standards in our asset management operations, which are reflected in the international best practices that MAS has embedded in its standards and regulations. Gulf Capital has been operating across Asian markets through its portfolio companies for the last 16 years now. We expect that this new license, our local presence and our on the ground private equity team in Singapore will accelerate our expansion from the Gulf region into Asia, which forms today the highest growth corridor in the world.” Shantanu Mukerji, Head of Gulf Capital’s Asian operations, added: “The new CMS license will further strengthen our activities in Singapore, and being regulated will boost our fund raising, sourcing, and investing efforts. It will also help us better manage, grow, and divest our portfolio companies seamlessly across the West-East Asia corridor. Receiving the CMS License from MAS is a significant achievement that will facilitate our investment activities in Singapore and into other neighbouring territories. Singapore is a great gateway for our ambitious pan-Asian expansion plans.”
Border Reopening With Mainland Supported Q1 Market Recovery Q1 Transaction Numbers Expected to Climb by 49% Q-O-Q
Global real estate services firm Cushman & Wakefield announced its Q1 2023 Hong Kong Residential Market Review and Outlook today. With the border reopening between Hong Kong and mainland China enacted in early February, coupled with the reduction of Ad Valorem Stamp Duty (AVD) in the 2023/2024 Budget, property buyers have regained confidence in the residential market, with prices rebounding. Residential transactions picked up in Q1 and are expected to record an increase of 49% q-o-q, to approximately 12,500 transactions. Rosanna Tang, Executive Director, Head of Research, Hong Kong, Cushman & Wakefield, said: "The border between mainland China and Hong Kong has reopened, prompting improved market sentiment and buyers' confidence. Some buyers moved quickly to seize opportunities in the relatively attractive market before prices fully rebounded. Property inquiries and inspections have also increased from the previous lows of last year. The recent government-announced reduction of AVD for residential properties will benefit first-time home buyers and spur demand for small-to-medium-sized properties below the HK$10 million mark. Property transactions will likely gain pace as some developers are now accelerating their launches of new home sales." Edgar Lai, Senior Director, Valuation and Advisory, Hong Kong, Cushman & Wakefield added: "The latest government data reveals that Hong Kong's overall residential property price level in January 2023 ended a consecutive seven-month decline to rise a modest 0.6% YTD, although this price point is still 15% lower than the peak recorded in 2021. Property prices recovered across market segments, with some housing estates even recording mild V-shaped rebounds. Among them, prices at City One Shatin, representing the mass market bracket, rose by 20% q-o-q. Taikoo Shing, in the middle market, recorded an increase of 11.3% q-o-q. Prices at these popular housing estates had been on a downtrend in H2 2022 and underperformed the overall market, mainly due to the impact of rising interest rates and previous stock market volatility. However, the mainland China-Hong Kong border reopening has given these estates a strong boost, with some owners firming up their asking prices due to the more promising outlook. As for the luxury housing segment, prices edged down only slightly in 2022 on the back of strong holding power from luxury homeowners, and hence the price rebound was generally less noted than in the mass market given the large lump sum commanded by such properties. Prices at Residence Bel-Air, representing the luxury market bracket, rose by 5.3% q-o-q. " Commenting on the market outlook, Edgar Lai shared: "In terms of primary market supply, we expect developers to focus on launches for mass market and mid-to-low priced properties, in key areas such as Hong Kong Island South, Kai Tak, Northwest New Territories, Sai Sha, and Pak Shek Kok. With the support of the AVD reduction policy, we anticipate that first-time home buyers and upgraders will quicken their pace to enter the market, while mainland buyers will renew their activity to support the recovery in transaction numbers. Considering the low base of transactions last year, it is expected that the annual residential transaction count will rise by 25% to 35% y-o-y, reaching about 58,000 to 60,000 transactions by the end of 2023." Rosanna Tang concluded: "Given that interest rates have yet to peak, and geopolitical and economic uncertainty may still impede a full recovery, the residential market may experience fairly sluggish property price movements in 2H this year. Nevertheless, we are delighted to see the government's active measures to reopen the city, which will help to expedite the return to normalcy in the broader economy and society. Over the long run, we believe that mainland buyers will be integral in supporting a full property market recovery in Hong Kong. The city's overall property price level is expected to rise by 5-10% for the full year in 2023, and this will be mostly reflected in the 1H period." Rosanna Tang, Executive Director, Head of Research, Hong Kong, Cushman & Wakefield (Left) and Edgar Lai, Senior Director, Valuation and Advisory, Hong Kong, Cushman & Wakefield (Right) shared Cushman & Wakefield's Q1 2023 Hong Kong Residential Market Review and Outlook today.
AIA Hong Kong announces signing of Memorandum of Understanding with The GBA Healthcare Group
As cross-border travel between Hong Kong and Mainland China fully resumes and residents travelling between the two locations become more frequent, their demand for medical healthcare services is also gaining momentum. AIA Hong Kong, together with Blue Cross (Asia-Pacific) Insurance Limited ("Blue Cross") and U Care Hong Kong Medical Limited ("U Care") under AIA Group, are pleased to announce today the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with The GBA Healthcare Group Limited ("GBAH") and its subsidiary, WellDoc Limited (collectively "GBAH Group"). The MOU aims to provide a diversified range of quality medical and healthcare services via GBAH Group's vast medical services network in the Greater China region to designated AIA Hong Kong, Blue Cross and U Care customers residing in the Greater Bay Area (GBA). Designated customers can have access to GBAH Group's medical institutions in Guangdong and Hong Kong, including UMP Medical Centres, and receive services that are consistent with the level of care adopted in Hong Kong. Such services include preventive care, continuity of treatment, chronic disease management, specialist care services and hospital admissions, as well as basic vaccination arrangements, medical check-ups and cross-border treatment, etc. Mr Alger Fung, Chief Executive Officer of AIA Hong Kong & Macau, said, "The collaboration between AIA Hong Kong, together with AIA Group's Blue Cross and U Care, and GBAH Group, leverages the strengths of both organisations to help customers live 'Healthier, Longer, Better Lives'. Through providing comprehensive and diversified medical management and healthcare services, the collaboration will enhance customers' health as well as their quality of life. The GBA Healthcare Group has extensive experiences in providing medical services according to the high standard of practice implemented in Hong Kong, enabling our individual life and group insurance customers who travel frequently between Hong Kong and the GBA or reside in both locations, to receive medical and healthcare services that are consistent with the level of care adopted in Hong Kong uninterruptedly." Ms Bonnie Tse, Chief Executive Officer of Blue Cross, said, "We are greatly encouraged by the collaboration, which will benefit both the customers of Blue Cross and U Care network, enabling our customers to enjoy quality cross-border healthcare services that are more diversified, extensive and accessible in the near future. While it is a sign of our continuous efforts in elevating customer experience, it also highlights our leading position in the field of healthcare insurance." Established in 2015, GBAH focuses on developing evidence based medical services management models in the GBA. Since it was founded, The GBAH has established the General Practice Oriented Learning and Development (GOLD) Training Programme, which adhered to the standard of diagnosis and treatment found in Hong Kong's family medicine practice and has been accredited by the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP). The GBAH has trained more than 2,000 GOLD family doctors and nurses in various cities around the GBA. It has also collaborated with local authorities to establish more than 100 Hong Kong-style Family Doctor Clinics at public community health service centres and built three Hong Kong and Macau Residents Health Service Centres through partnerships with major hospitals to offer members an integrated outpatient and inpatient medical services as found in Hong Kong. Dr Sun Yiu Kwong, Chairman of The GBA Healthcare Group, said, "We are very excited to be partnering up with AIA Hong Kong, Blue Cross and U Care to drive coordinated healthcare services together. In the past, insurance companies have mainly focused on providing medical claims to their customers. Underpinned by its 'customer-centricity' philosophy, AIA Hong Kong has been providing an array of innovative services, from 'AIA Vitality' to prevention and protection, and treatment to recovery support, to their customers throughout their health journey. AIA Hong Kong's purpose to help customers live 'Healthier, Longer, Better Lives' resonates with our Group's vision of making family doctors customers' first point of contact for healthcare services to help them stay healthy. We are committed to providing top quality medical and healthcare services to address customers' medical needs. We look forward to working with AIA Hong Kong, Blue Cross and U Care to help our customers lead healthier lives." The collaboration reflects AIA Hong Kong, Blue Cross and U Care's steadfast commitment in supporting the Government's efforts in bolstering the primary healthcare system. Through robust collaborations with medical and healthcare service providers and making reference to the Government's "family doctor for all" medical care concept, the collaboration strives to offer individual life and group insurance customers access to family doctor services so they can receive appropriate preventive care, thereby strengthening chronic disease management and enabling them to receive specialist treatment as necessary to enhance personal health and disease prevention. The collaboration between AIA Hong Kong, Blue Cross and U Care and GBAH Group will kick off in the GBA area, and is expected to be extended to other major cities in Mainland China to ensure interconnectivity of healthcare services. Additional arrangements will be announced in due course.
HDFC Bank continues investing in platform technologies to improve customer experience and enhance efficiencies
HDFC Bank Ltd has appointed Backbase to deliver their vision for a market-leading digital banking experience in India. Backbase powers HDFC Bank’s next-gen retail banking, enabling a more seamless customer experience across digital touchpoints in response to changing consumer expectations and new regulatory requirements. HDFC Bank is India’s largest private sector bank, providing innovative products and smart banking solutions to over 70 million customers across India. A Backbase customer since 2016, HDFC Bank has renewed its agreement in line with its technical design principles of security, horizontal scalability, and remaining cloud agnostic. Built as one unified platform to engage and orchestrate frictionless experiences across all touchpoints at every stage of the customer lifecycle across retail banking, business banking, digital lending, and wealth management, Backbase has helped 150+ banks and credit unions around the globe re-architect banking around their customers. “Indian consumers expect digital banking to match the seamless experience of their favourite e-commerce and social media platforms. In addition to savvy UI, from savings to loans to payments and beyond, customers want to effortlessly complete transactions, easily and quickly, anytime and anywhere. Backbase’s banking platform has been assessed to be what we need and; we are confident that it will help us develop new services faster,” Ramesh Lakshminarayanan, CIO and Group IT Head, HDFC Bank said. HDFC Bank’s next-gen customer-first internet banking architecture will be run and managed on the Backbase Engagement Banking Platform. The digital banking platform meets Indian money transfer regulations, via seamless integrations with Real Time Gross Settlement (RTGS), National Electronic Funds Transfer (NEFT), Immediate Payment Service (IMPS), and UPI Payments, and encompasses enhanced, configurable local security features on par with local industry standards. HDFC Bank continues to invest in technologies to improve customer experience and enhance efficiencies by providing a seamless experience to their customers across all platforms, on the back of a resilient infrastructure, building on the HDFC Bank Enterprise and Digital Factory established in June 2021. “I’m delighted to continue partnering with HDFC Bank to bring platform-era banking to its millions of customers,” Jouk Pleiter, CEO, Backbase said. “We’ve worked tirelessly to earn the trust of HDFC Bank, and we’re excited to deliver a next-generation banking experience in one of the most important and innovative banking markets in the world.” - Localized delivery Backbase provides seamless local engineering, implementation and customer support, for banks in India, including HDFC Bank, through its Asia Customer Success hub and Hyderabad Backbase Development Center (BDC), freeing financial institutions to focus on delivering hyper-personalized experiences and support as well as generating new revenue streams. In addition, for banks with hybrid or pure cloud implementation, Backbase provides local support via our data centers within Mumbai and Hyderabad. “Our strong local technology and engineering resources allow us to do it right the first time, and to do more with less,” Abhijit Chavan, Regional Vice President, Customer Success, Asia, Backbase explained. “Our engineering investment in India and customer success hub provides instant digital execution power to Indian financial institutions as they move to a unified banking platform architecture.”
Kenanga Investors Wins Best Mixed Assets
Kenanga Investors Berhad ("Kenanga Investors") received five awards at the Refinitiv Lipper Fund Awards 2023 ("Awards"). The firm was recognized for its exceptional performance and was awarded best Mixed Assets - Malaysia Pension Funds Group for the fourth consecutive time Accompanying this were individual fund wins for: Kenanga Malaysian Inc Fund ("KMIF") for best Equity Malaysia Diversified – Malaysia Provident Funds over 10 Years Kenanga Managed Growth Fund ("KMGF") for best Mixed Asset MYR Flexible - Malaysia Provident Funds over 3 Years Kenanga Managed Growth Fund ("KMGF") for best Mixed Asset MYR Flexible – Malaysia Provident Funds over 5 Years Kenanga Managed Growth Fund ("KMGF") for best Mixed Asset MYR Flexible - Malaysia Provident Funds over 10 Years "These awards demonstrate the firm's capabilities despite the backdrop of reduced trading activities and prolonged turmoil due to a degree of volatility over the last two years. We attribute this success to the application of our stock picking strategy over the long term; it involves a comprehensive research process from understanding industry dynamics to individual company business models and drivers of return on equity. Some of the key areas include management quality, the sustainability of the business model, industry dynamics and balance sheet strength. By consistently applying this strategy, our funds have outperformed throughout the last 3, 5 and 10 years", says Datuk Wira Ismitz Matthew De Alwis, Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer. KMGF pulled ahead to pick up its first major award since its inception in 2004. As at 31 December 2022, the Fund has returned 232.38% since inception, thus achieving its investment objective of achieving long-term capital growth through diversified investments in equities and bonds. "On the equity front, the fund increased its exposure into large capitalisation stocks such as financials as well as quality small capitalisation stocks and reopening names. On fixed income, the fund remained overweight on corporate bond as yields are attractive relative to Government and quasi-Government bonds", he explains. A return winner, KMIF swept its third title at the awards by delivering returns of 116.13% (10 years), 22.52% (5 years) and 23.38% (3 years) as at 31 December 2022. KMIF aims to provide consistent annual returns and medium to long-term capital appreciation by investing in Malaysian securities with a global reach On the firm's ESG roadmap thus far, he shares "Following the integration of ESG screening assessments into our investment process in 2021, we expanded upon our ESG framework to cover the fixed income asset class. where an in-house ESG assessment and scoring was developed to perform positive screening for bonds/sukuk. On the equity front meanwhile, we established a more comprehensive sector/industry focused assessments for sectors with high ESG risks such as palm oil, oil & gas, banking & finance, power and mining. We also added to our suite of Kenanga Sustainability Series products with the launch of Kenanga Sustainability Series: High Yield Bond Fund, Kenanga Sustainability Series: World Quality ESG Fund and the Kenanga Sustainability Series: Emergency Waqf Musa'adah Fund". Moving forward Datuk Wira De Alwis says that the firm will adopt a more balanced strategy to continue delivering outperformance. "The team will focus on selecting companies with strong fundamentals and cash flow generation abilities. Sector wise, we prefer domestic demand beneficiaries such as consumer and financials. For structural growth themes such as technology, we are buyers on market weakness for its longer-term growth potential". For more information about Kenanga Investors, please visit www.kenangainvestors.com.my
Gulf Capital Capitalises on Unprecedented Growth and Unique Investment Opportunities across the new East-West Asia Corridor
Gulf Capital, a leading thematic Private Equity buyout firm operating across the GCC and Southeast Asia, predicts that the East-West Asia investment corridor will drive global economic growth for the next three decades. The GDP of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries, the ASEAN countries, and India will grow by 220%, 270% and 410% respectively by 2050, in contrast to a slower growth of 50% for the European economies and 80% for the US economy over the next three decades. Clearly, the new Silk Route across the East-West corridor is one of the fastest growing economic blocs in the world today. SuperReturn Asia Conference, which opens in Singapore for the first time tomorrow to an audience of over 1,000 delegates from all over the world, will discuss opportunities for global and regional investors as Asian countries deepen and strengthen their investment networks across East and West of Asia. Gulf Capital’s Chief Executive Officer Dr Karim El Solh, who is delivering SuperReturn Asia’s keynote speech, explained: “Global investors today realise that they have unprecedented growth opportunities in Asia, with robust macro-economic fundamentals, a growing middle-class led by a young, tech-savvy demographic, and a revival of the intra-regional economic connectivity and trade flows along the new Silk Route. With a network of local offices and on the ground private equity teams from the GCC to Southeast Asia, Gulf Capital is uniquely positioned to capitalise on this unprecedented growth across the new Silk Route across the East-West Asia corridor.” With Asia’s GDP expected to grow by USD 22 trillion by 2050, it will account for 60% of the global GDP. Specifically, the GCC states of Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar, Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, and ASEAN countries are making significant contributions to Asia’s overall growth, representing half the world’s total projected GDP growth through 2050. This is mainly due to their investor-friendly regulations, thriving industrial activity, successful diversification drives, a growing services sector, and a young entrepreneurial populace. Asia’s population growth will shape this development. The continent’s middle-class is expected to grow to three billion people by 2030, representing 60% of the global population. By 2040, this segment is likely to account for 40% of global consumption. Mid-market businesses have the opportunity to profit from the rising per capita consumption brought on by the burgeoning middle-class in Asia. The GCC remains a rare, bright spot amidst the current global downturn defined by tightening monetary policy, rising interest rates, and increasing food and energy prices. Despite a sobering global macro climate, Gulf Capital’s core target regions continue to demonstrate robust resilience and record growth. For instance, Saudi Arabia’s GDP grew by a remarkable 12.2% in Q2 2022, positioning the Kingdom as the fastest growing major economy in the world. Saudi Arabia is projected to grow by 7.6% in 2022, up from 3.2% in 2021. The UAE is projected to grow by a solid 6.2% in 2022 on the back of higher oil prices and a very successful diversification drive in the non-oil sector. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) estimates that energy exporters in the Middle East and Central Asia will net USD 320 billion more in oil revenues than its initial projection, a figure equivalent to about 7% of their combined GDP. As a result, the GCC economies will more than double their GDP growth rate in 2022, to achieve a considerable growth of 6.4%, up from 3.1% in 2021. Over the next four years, the cumulative financial surplus in the GCC could reach USD 1.4-trillion according to IMF projections, positioning the region as one the richest and most credit worthy economic blocks in the world. Gulf Capital invests in well-established mid-market businesses run by brilliant entrepreneurs in the technology, fintech, healthcare, business services, and sustainability industries. These industries are among the emerging ones in the Asia Pacific technology market, which is projected to reach a value of USD 675-billion by 2025. Gulf Capital has built a long track record of backing entrepreneurs in these sectors and transforming their companies from local players to global leaders, through ambitious organic growth and acquisition campaigns. The Firm also has a unique focus on deep operational improvements in its portfolio companies thanks to its large bench of 23 industry advisors and operating partners. On average, Gulf Capital has more than tripled the profitability of the companies it successfully sold and exited. Gulf Capital's recently established an office in Singapore and hired a local team of private equity experts which will help Gulf Capital’s portfolio companies to expand from the GCC to Southeast Asia. Mr. Shantanu Mukerji, Head of Gulf Capital’s Southeast Asian operation, said: “As we expand our franchise, we will focus on acquiring and growing portfolio companies along the East-West Asia investment corridor. Typically, we have been acquiring companies in the West of Asia and growing them into global leaders by successfully expanding them across East Asia. Over the last fifteen years, we have acquired 14 companies across Asia and successfully expanded our portfolio companies to this high growth region. With a solid private equity team based out of Singapore, we now look forward to investing in ASEAN businesses and expanding them in the reverse direction to the GCC and the broader Middle East. ASEAN businesses that we take to the GCC will benefit from the very high growth and numerous opportunities in this region. Long term, we intend to recreate this new Silk Route and invest along the high growth East-West Asia corridor.” Dr Karim El Solh concluded: “We will continue to create value to our investors by building global leaders from the West to East Asia and vice versa and by partnering with successful entrepreneurs and business leaders to help internationalise their companies and boost their profitability. We have a unique investment approach, focused on deep operational improvements and rapid market internationalisation, and we believe our differentiated strategy can create real value to our global investors which include some of the largest and most prestigious sovereign wealth funds, public and corporate pension plans, endowments, foundations, and family offices. In today’s volatile and uncertain global economic environment, we are particularly encouraged by the improving growth prospects and strong momentum of our East-West Asia investment corridor.”
Sainsbury’s partners with Williams Advanced Engineering and gives green light to sustainable start-ups with £5 million investment
As part of its pledge to reach Net Zero in its own operations by 2035, Sainsbury’s has announced the launch of Sainsbury’s Innovation Investments which will invest a minimum of £5 million over the next four years into start-up businesses commercialising innovative, sustainable technologies that look to reduce operational carbon emissions and water usage. Williams Advanced Engineering (WAE) will scout and invest into early-stage companies, not limited to the Sainsbury’s supply chain, across a range of sectors. The first investment is expected to be announced before the end of 2022. In addition to providing much needed investment, Sainsbury’s is looking to accelerate dynamic start-ups and Small/Medium Enterprises (SME’s) in developing, testing, and deploying transformational technology that can reduce carbon emissions and water usage. This announcement furthers the significant progress Sainsbury’s has already made in reducing its impact on the environment, having drastically cut its carbon emissions in its own operations by 762,119 tCO2e, a reduction of 7 per cent year-on-year and 20 per cent from its 2018/19 baseline, keeping the retailer on course to meet its Net Zero target of 2035. Sainsbury’s Innovation Investments is part of Sainsbury’s ongoing partnership with WAE, a world-leading technology and engineering services business, which combines cutting-edge technological advances and the industry’s best engineers; accelerating the drive for zero emissions. In 2017, Sainsbury’s began the process of installing innovative Aerofoil technology to its fridges in-store. Since then, the pioneering energy-saving technology, collaboratively developed by UK start-up Aerofoil Energy and WAE, has been rolled out across the entire estate, resulting in an estimated 15% energy-reduction, with other retailers since following suit. Patrick Dunne, Sainsbury’s Property and Procurement Director, said: “We are committed to reaching our Net Zero target of 2035 and are proud to be doing our part in leading the way to create solutions that will reduce carbon emissions and water usage not just in our stores, but across the entire sector. We know that reducing emissions and water use is a critical part of tackling the climate crisis and to achieve this, we understand the importance of investing in pioneering technologies that can be adopted by all retailers.” “Tackling an issue of this scale requires collaboration and we’re really excited to not only invest in these businesses, but also provide a pathway to in-store use, working towards a more sustainable future for everyone.” Matthew Burke, Head of Technology Ventures, Williams Advanced Engineering said: “Embracing new and unproven technologies is a necessary requirement to meet Net Zero and many of these products and services will emerge from the technology start-up community. Sainsbury’s Innovation Investments will accelerate the commercialisation of these technologies through the opportunity of investment, trial and deployment across Sainsbury’s vast estate and operations. In doing so it will act as a springboard for wider and rapid technology adoption by customers across retail and other sectors who all share common Net Zero challenges. With WAE’s focus on sustainability, and expertise in technology and engineering combined with early-stage technology investing, we are delighted to be supporting Sainsbury’s journey to Net Zero with the launch of this unique investment initiative.” Sainsbury’s has committed to becoming Net Zero in its own operations by 2035, five years earlier than its original ambition. The retailer is calling on sustainable technology businesses keen to join on its journey to Net Zero 2035 to apply at https://wae.com/sainsburys-innovation-investments
FutuRaM project to contribute to securing Europe’s supply of important raw materials
The Future Availability of Secondary Raw Materials (FutuRaM) project commenced on 1st June 2022 and will play a key role in ensuring a secure supply of secondary and critical raw materials from within the European Union. Access to important raw materials that the EU requires for its triple digital, energy and circular economy transition is becoming increasingly uncertain. Added to this, changes in the geopolitical situation, as the war in Ukraine highlights by drawing attention to, for example, the fact that Ukraine/Russia are sitting on 40% of the world supply of palladium, can cause sudden disruptions to the supply chain. Extracting more of these materials from waste streams that are rich in them, and predicting future demand, will help to mitigate the risks associated with this uncertainty and reduce reliance on other countries for their supply. FutuRaM, funded through the European Union’s Horizon Europe programme, will develop the Secondary Raw Materials knowledge base on the availability and recoverability of secondary raw materials (SRMs) within the European Union (EU), with a special focus on critical raw materials (CRMs). The project research will enable fact-based decision making for the recovery and use of SRMs within and outside the EU, and disseminate the data generated via an accessible knowledge base developed in the project. Access to raw materials drives the economy. It thus determines the competitive position of industry, and society’s ability to transition toward a decarbonised world. Some raw materials, such as palladium, lithium, or cobalt, are deemed ‘critical’ because they are economically and strategically important for the economy but have a high-risk associated with their supply. Pascal Leroy, Director General of the WEEE Forum, the organisation leading FutuRaM said, “In many instances, CRM primary extraction is limited to a few locations outside of Europe, and there are no viable substitutes for these materials with current technologies. The effective management of raw material supply and demand requires reliable, coherent, and complete information and strategic foresight on SRMs and that is what the project will provide.” FutuRaM will establish a methodology, reporting structure, and guidance to improve the raw materials knowledge base up to 2050. It will integrate SRM and CRM data to model their current stocks and flows, and consider economic, technological, geopolitical, regulatory, social and environmental factors to further develop, demonstrate and align SRM recovery projects with the United Nations Framework Classification for Resources (UNFC), a tool that enables a better understanding of the viability of raw material projects. This will enable the commercial exploitation of SRMs and CRMs by manufacturers, recyclers, and investors, and the knowledge base developed in the project will support policy makers and governmental authorities. FutuRaM will focus on six waste streams: batteries; electrical and electronic equipment; vehicles; mining; slags and ashes; and construction and demolition. These waste streams represent an important source of CRMs. For instance, in the manufacture of current electrical and electronic equipment, vehicles and batteries, 60% of global demand for gallium comes from optoelectronics and integrated circuits, 56% of indium from flat panel displays, 36% of tantalum from capacitors, 46% of cobalt, 32% of lithium and 8% of nickel from batteries, and 30% of rare earth elements from magnets.1 Kees Balde, Senior Scientific Specialist at the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR), which is the scientific coordinator for FutuRaM said, “CRM demand is expected to significantly increase in the transition towards a low carbon society. For instance, technologies for future vehicles will rely on Li-ion batteries, fuel cells, and electric traction motors, and electricity generation will rely on more wind energy and photovoltaic technologies. Waste from mining, construction and demolition activities are hugely significant as they generate by far the largest post-production and post-consumption flows of SRM.” This ambitious project will be delivered by a consortium of 28 outstanding partners from 11 countries across Europe. Leading universities and research institutes will combine their expertise with industry and industry associations to implement FutuRaM. Working closely with the European Commission and other relevant policy makers, the project will last for four years.