Qatar Sells Hochtief Stake in Third Disposal in Three Monthsby
Sovereign wealth funds have been selling assets amid oil slump
QIA has sold London property and Vinci stake in recent months
The sale by Qatar Investment Authority of its 10 percent stake in Hochtief AG for 540 million euros ($615 million) marks the third publicly announced disposal in as many months by the sovereign wealth fund of the world’s largest exporter of liquefied natural gas.
The QIA, as the fund is known, disposed of 7 million shares in the Essen, Germany-based construction company at a price equal to 77 euros apiece, it said in a statement Monday. A “significant portion” of the shares went to a single strategic holder that wasn’t identified. The sale is part of routine portfolio management, said the QIA, which invested in Hochtief in 2011.
The Qatari fund, the ninth-largest sovereign wealth fund in the world with assets exceeding $250 billion, according to the Sovereign Wealth Fund Institute, has stepped up disposals in recent months amid a slump in oil prices. The QIA said it planned to sell a 1.1 percent stake in Vinci SA valued at as much as 380 million euros last week, while subsidiary Qatari Diar Real Estate Investment Co. and Canary Wharf Group sold two London office buildings valued at more than 550 million pounds ($845 million) in August.
Qatar Holding, another unit of QIA, and other investors in Miramax have hired Morgan Stanley and Qatari investment bank QInvest to find a buyer for the studio, a person with knowledge of the matter told Bloomberg last month. Even amid the disposals, the QIA is still looking at new investments and said last week it opened an office in New York and plans to invest $35 billion in the U.S. over the next five years to diversify its holdings.