Sovereign Wealth Funds (SWFs) are state-owned investment funds whose capital primarily originates from foreign currency reserves. Recently, they have been placed under the global economic spotlight after injecting much-needed capital into several Wall Street financial firms. As their number and accumulated assets increase, so does the impact of SWFs on global financial markets. What are the nature and legal structure of SWF investments? What kind of regulatory hurdles do SWFs faces in making foreign investments in the United States? Are there any national security concerns raised by such investments? Should the international community regulate the activities of SWFs? What benefits do SWFs bring, and for whom? Leading legal practitioners, academics and policymakers are invited to explore these as well as other legal and practical issues surrounding the rise of Sovereign Wealth Funds.
Partner, Sullivan & Cromwell LLP
Robert Chu heads Sullivan & Cromwell's Beijing office. Previously resident in S&C's New York and Hong Kong offices, he has advised clients on a wide range of M&A and corporate finance transactions involving companies in the United States, Asia, Europe and the Middle East.
Mr. Chu's recent experience includes advising China Investment Corporation on its investments globally; a GCC-based sovereign wealth fund on matters in Asia; Dubai Ports on its acquisition of CSX World Terminals, which involved strategic assets in China, Hong Kong, Australia, the Americas, Europe and elsewhere around the world; Thomson S.A. on the combination of the global television businesses of Thomson and TCL to create the world's largest television producer; Bank of China Limited on the strategic investments by The Royal Bank of Scotland Group, Temasek Holdings, UBS AG and the Asian Development Bank; The Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Allianz AG and American Express Company on their strategic investments in the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China; and Jilin Chemical Industrial Company Limited, a company tri-listed on the New York, Hong Kong and Shenzhen stock exchanges, on its going-private transaction involving a tender offer by PetroChina Company Limited; D.E. Shaw on matters in China; and various other enterprises in China and elsewhere on capital raising, cross-border acquisitions and investments, takeover defense and corporate governance.
Mr. Chu is a graduate of MIT and Harvard Law School.
Udaibir S. Das
Assistant Director, Monetary and Capital Markets Department, International Monetary Fund
Mr. Udaibir S. Das is an Assistant Director in the Monetary and Capital Markets Department of the IMF where he heads the Sovereign Asset and Liability Management Division. Mr. Das leads a team that covers policy and operational issues relating to sovereign balance sheet risk management, debt, reserves and sovereign asset management, and local and regional sovereign bond markets. He is also associated with country specific vulnerability assessments and financial stability surveillance.
Randall D. Guynn
Partner, Davis Polk & Wardwell
Mr. Guynn heads Davis Polk’s Financial Institutions Group. His practice focuses on strategic bank regulatory and enforcement advice and advising on transactions when the target or issuer is a financial institution. He advises on corporate governance and internal controls, cross-border collateral transactions, securities settlement and payment systems. His clients include many of the world’s leading banks. Recent representations include: the Federal Reserve Bank of New York on the U.S. Treasury’s $250 billion capital purchase program; Royal Bank of Scotland Group (RBSG) on the backstop provided by the U.K. government on a £20 billion capital offering; Citigroup on its $20 billion capital investment and $306 billion asset guarantee by the government; Freddie Mac on its conservatorship and assistance package; the N.Y. Fed on the $85 billion AIG financing; Morgan Stanley on issues related to its bank holding company conversion and several national security reviews of sovereign wealth fund investments. His recently announced M&A transactions: Morgan Stanley’s sale of a $5 billion interest to the China Investment Corporation; E*TRADE’s sale of a $2.5 billion interest to Citadel and ABN AMRO’s $101 billion acquisition by a consortium of banks. Guynn joined Davis Polk in 1986 and became partner in 1993. He clerked for the Honorable William Rehnquist, U.S. Supreme Court, from 1985-1986. He has participated in panels including “US Investments by Sovereign Wealth Funds,” sponsored by the N.Y. City Bar and has authored several publications, including “Foreign Bank Acquisitions of U.S. Banks and Thrifts,” in U.S. REGULATION OF FOREIGN BANKS (5th ed. 2008).
Allen Ferrell (Moderator)
Greenfield Professor of Securities Law, Harvard Law School
Allen Ferrell is the Greenfield Professor of Securities Law at Harvard Law School, a research associate at the European Corporate Governance Institute, a member of the board of economic advisors to FINRA, a member of the ABA task force on corporate governance and a faculty associate at the Kennedy School of Government. He received his PhD in economics from MIT and his JD from Harvard Law School. He clerked for Judge Silberman on the D.C. Circuit and Justice Kennedy on the Supreme Court of the United States. He has written and consulted widely in the areas of securities regulation and corporate governance. He has also served as the moderator of the Asian Exchange Conference in Singapore and has given talks at the Shenzhen Stock Exchange, the World Bank and other forums addressing a variety of securities issues in Asia.