ABU DHABI INVESTMENT AUTHORITY

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1 ABU DHABI INVESTMENT AUTHORITY Managing More of its Assets Internally and Taking a More Active Approach to Investing Than Ever Before SPECIAL REPORT

2 As Sovereign Wealth Funds have grown in size and visibility over the years, investor relations teams have increasingly sought out ways to target and engage the decision makers behind these significant pools of capital. The basic thesis has been that SWFs are sitting on tremendous asset bases and are able to take top ownership in select stories, with less turnover than your standard investment manager - in theory, the perfect investor target for IR teams. However, a combination of external/internal asset management strategies, scant public ownership disclosure and less visibility at the traditional investor meeting places, have historically stood as hurdles to engagement. Moreover, without a clear view of ownership, IR teams have been hard pressed to make the case for access to management without a clear view of the ROI for that time and access. To combat these historical barriers, a positive recent trend across several SWFs has included significant outreach and direct corporate access programs, which has led to growing awareness and visibility into the SWF community. This has allowed for increased intelligence on the institutions and their strategies as well as a willingness by issuers to provide access to top management team members. With this trend of increased engagement in mind, Ipreo collaborated with the investment team at the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority to provide issuers with a view into the institution s investment strategy and recent moves to bring an increasing amount of capital under in-house active management. BUT FIRST, A BRIEF BACKGROUND ON THE SWF ADIA was established by the Government of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi in 1976, as a way to invest the nation s assets (financial surplus from oil exports) with a focus on long-term value creation. The Government of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi provides ADIA with the funds that are allocated for investment and surplus to its budgetary requirements and its other funding commitments. The main driver of inflows and/or outflows are largely tied to the nation s chief export, oil. And, in the SWF s history, any sort of withdrawal has occurred infrequently. Here is where the SWF significantly differs from your typical mutual, pension or hedge fund. With a different liability profile, the fund is able to invest for the long-term across more than two dozen asset classes and sub-categories, and capital flows are not linked to the ebbs and flows of outside investors and themes, such as the flight from active to passive, that have acted to the detriment of typical stock-picking funds. In short, steady capital inflows need to be put to work in varied investment ideas, and the fund is managing more money in-house and managing more actively than ever before. 2

3 How much capital are we talking about AND HOW IS IT BEING MANAGED? Although the fund does not publicly disclose AUM or holdings, the Sovereign Wealth Institute estimates that the fund is managing over $792B in AUM, making it the third largest Sovereign Wealth Fund (just behind China Investment Corp. and the Government Pension Fund of Norway). To compare the SWF to a well-known U.S. active manager, the largest active mutual fund manager in North America, Fidelity Management & Research Company, manages $801B in EAUM, with reported total assets of $1.1T. As with many large institutions, ADIA manages a diversified portfolio, which includes quoted equities, fixed income, real estate, private equity, alternatives and infrastructure assets. Narrowing the focus to the equities investment departments, the fund breaks this into three main strategies: Indexed Funds manages the largest proportion of ADIA s equities with the objective of achieving index returns with the flexibility to add value within approved guidelines. External Equities oversees the activities of external investment managers who employ active strategies to invest in global equity markets. IED (Internal Equities Department) is the most relevant department for corporate issuers. IED invests directly in global equity markets and actively manages these investments in order to generate returns that outperform the relevant benchmarks. And this department is growing, as the firm has strategically hired top talent from well-known buy-side firms in-house. 3

4 Can you tell us more about the INTERNAL EQUITIES DEPARTMENT (IED)? IROs take notice: this is the group you want to be reaching out to. This division bases its investment decisions on bottom-up fundamental research and organizes its portfolios on a geographic, sector and/or thematic basis. Meeting with IR and management is a fundamental part of this process. Each team or portfolio in this department is led by a Portfolio Manager, backed by a deputy PM, and consists of analysts as well as sector and/or country specialists. It is important to note that these teams can take a long-term investment horizon and look to support corporates in building shareholder value over time. In contrast to the growing focus and scrutiny on quarterly earnings reports and short-term trading, a significant portion of ADIA s IED capital is looking to be patient and ideally can be supportive of management teams with strategies that may take time to deliver growth. Are all of IED s Portfolios BASED ON LONG-TERM BUY AND HOLD STRATEGIES? No, not quite. IED has portfolios that are both short term and long term in nature. The shortterm portfolios seek to identify and invest in mis-priced stocks and then exit the investment when the shares are fully valued, common to many other investors. In addition, IED runs a number of portfolios which take a longer-term view based on an assessment of a company s long-term prospects and its ability to realize them, combined with major macro and industry-wide trends. The firm employs a range of sophisticated strategies and has spent considerable time and resources building out in-house capabilities to rival any asset manager in the world. IED s investment universe is large and diverse. It does not have top-down driven sector biases, so it is able to invest across sectors and regions. It operates as a conglomerate of multiple independent portfolios, providing significant flexibility by employing a variety of different investment styles. And this range of abilities is growing. In the past three years, IED has nearly doubled the number of investment professionals in the team, added a number of new mandates US, High Conviction Global Alpha, UK, and European Growth, for instance and have more planned. 4

5 How does an equity research IDEA LEAD TO A TANGIBLE INVESTMENT? The investment process starts at the sector-focused portfolio managers/analysts, who identify compelling stock ideas through bottom-up, fundamental research. At this point, there may be contact with the issuer to answer key questions. Stock recommendations are then subjected to a collaborative and iterative vetting process by other team members. Final decision-making authority for individual stocks and portfolio management (construction and risk allocation) rests with the head of each of the various teams. To help color their views, the teams do use external research providers, including sellside research, to enhance their knowledge of industry and company trends. However, sell-side research is not typically used as a source of investment ideas. The common perception is that SWFS only invest in MEGA CAP BLUE CHIPS. IS THAT THE CASE FOR ADIA? IED can and does invest in small, mid-and large-cap companies. Yes, that means you! When considering an investment, one of the key criteria IED assesses is a stock s liquidity profile to ensure it is consistent with the relevant portfolio s risk guidelines. There are also some natural limitations to investing in certain small-cap stocks, common to many other large institutional investors, but these are a function of practical considerations rather formal constraints. That means, if you are a publicly listed equity with a compelling story to tell, this team is interested and ADIA may present a dynamic new relationship and key target that should be considered as part of any issuer s annual investor outreach plan. 5

6 If an issuer prioritizes time to engage with ADIA WHAT IS THE TYPICAL SIZE OF A POSITION ADIA WILL TAKE IN ITS HOLDINGS? The IED has no clear restrictions in the size of the investment it can make. As a diversified investor, ADIA s holdings in individual stocks tend to track weightings in market indices. However, the fund is able to take larger stakes in companies and will do so when it has built trust in management via engagement and understanding in the long-term value proposition. The firm does not disclose holdings, but will confirm with corporate teams when a position has been initiated. If, after engagement, the IED team shares that they are involved in your story, chalk it up as a win. Due to ADIA s longer term investment horizons, it can offer a valuable source of patient capital for corporates embarking on strategic initiatives, seeking to raise capital or requiring stability during volatile market conditions. As it pertains to voting, ADIA exercises its voting rights in certain circumstances to protect its interests or to oppose motions that may be detrimental to shareholders as a body. What should corporate teams know about IED S EXPECTATIONS FOR CONTACT WITH MANAGEMENT? First and foremost, interaction with management is extremely important and valued by the team. If you want ADIA to invest a significant amount of capital in your company, management access is a must. Like many active stock-pickers, the team encourages interaction to build a better understanding of the story, the long-term strategy and its drivers. This does not mean that ADIA proactively communicates with all the issuers in which it invests, but the difference between a short-term investment and long-term interest often hinges on interaction and an ongoing dialogue with the corporate management team. 6

7 What can a corporate team expect WHEN ENGAGING WITH THE IED TEAM AT ADIA? In regards to engagement, meeting with the ADIA team is similar to meeting with any buy-side team that has the ability to take a concentrated stake. They will come well prepared with their top people, and you should consider doing the same. A usual approach is for ADIA s sector Portfolio Manager and/or Head of Team to represent ADIA at meetings with corporates. The team prefers to meet with 1-2 C-level executives from the issuer s side. Portfolio Managers are deeply involved in the sectors and geographies they cover and are supported by detailed market research, meaning IED s representatives thoroughly prepare for engagements with corporates. Moreover, the team views meetings as a two-way street, and IED s large investment universe, global nature and access to research means its teams can often offer views on macro and micro trends that issuers often find useful. Sometimes it is tough to get buy-in from management to take a long flight to UAE, WHAT ARE OTHER VENUES AND WAYS CORPORATE TEAMS CAN ENGAGE WITH THE ADIA TEAM? For IED team members covering certain geographies, travel to the key sector conferences and to current and potential holdings HQs is part of the standard research process. If the management team is traveling to the region or has business in the area, IED regularly invites executives to visit ADIA headquarters in Abu Dhabi. These engagements can be highly productive in building a long-term relationship with multiple members of the ADIA team. However, given the geographies in play, the team also uses video conference technology on a regular basis and would usually expect to interact with issuers of significant positions at least two times per year in a face-to-face forum or video teleconference. 7 INTERESTED? WE THOUGHT SO. As the team has grown at a rapid pace and is looking to engage with corporate teams, a central contact address has been created for IED to assist with issuers wishing to engage with ADIA:

8 FIND OUT MORE ABOUT IPREO We work as an extension of our clients Investor Relations teams Ipreo is a leading global provider of financial services technology, data and analytics. We support all participants in the capital-raising process including banks, public and private companies, institutional and individual investors, as well as research, asset management and wealth management firms. Our extensive suite of investor relations services provides our corporate clients with unparalleled cross-asset class surveillance, investor targeting, buy-side perception studies, transaction analysis and predictive analytics. Additionally, Ipreo s BD Corporate IR workflow platform offers the most accurate and comprehensive database covering global institutional contacts, profiles, and ownership data. Our critical insights and flexible solutions help our clients run more effective investor relations programs. Ipreo is private-equity held by Blackstone and Goldman Sachs Merchant Banking Division, and has more than 1100 employees supporting clients in every major financial hub around the world. 8

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