By Andy Sambidge
Kuwait Investment Authority chief inks deal with the Russian Direct Investment Fund
The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) has signed a co-investment deal with the Kuwait Investment Authority which will see the oil-rich Gulf state invest $500m alongside the RDIF into Russian companies.
The initiative was announced by Bader Mohammed Al-Saad, CEO and managing director, KIA, in a meeting with President Vladimir Putin.
Al-Saad said: "Russia's economy will continue to grow faster than those of developed countries. Co-investing with the RDIF offers us a good opportunity to invest in the real economy and gain diversification across all sectors.
"This is not a short-term investment in the stock market prone to volatility; it is an excellent and fair partnership with the RDIF and there is Russian government support for this partnership. We highly rate the skilled management team of the RDIF."
RDIF was set up last year to encourage foreign investors to match state investments in Russian assets.
Kirill Dmitriev, CEO of the RDIF, added: "Automatic co-investment by the Kuwait Investment Authority, one of the largest and most respected investors globally, significantly increases the funds the RDIF can invest in the Russian economy.
"We are delighted to be announcing a major co-investment with a leading fund from the Middle East, already second for the RDIF, as historically that region of the world has not been well represented among foreign investors in Russia."
The RDIF also said in a statement it had launched a pre-IPO investment programme with Goldman Sachs, Blackrock and Franklin Templeton aimed at firms seeking to float on Russia's MICEX-RTS index.For all the latest banking and finance news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.