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Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - PP firm joins equity fund from Qatar

PP firm joins equity fund from Qatar

ASIA’S growing economic strength has attracted the attention of a Qatar-based equity fund, which has signed Phnom Penh-based financial services company Covenant International Management as exclusive distributor to regional investors.

The US$15 million fund operated by Qatar National Bank (QNB) has partnered with Covenant International Management as its exclusive Asia distributor, the company stated Monday.

Investing solely in Qatar’s Doha Securities Market, the QNB backed Al Watani II fund is being marketed to Asia’s investors.

Covenant chief executive officer Anthony Galliano said: “As Cambodia’s markets develop, geographic diversification will be important to [Cambodian] investors, and investment in various assets classes will be embraced as they begin to understand equities as an asset class.”

Al Watani II is one of two QNB-backed funds, together worth $38 million, investing in Qatar’s Doha Securities Market. The open-ended fund requires a minimum initial investment of $5,000.

QNB is 50 percent owned by the Persian Gulf nation’s Qatar Investment Authority sovereign wealth fund, and 50 percent by private investors.

Galliano said the Indonesian-registered and Phnom Penh-based Covenant would focus on marketing the fund to wholesale investors such as private banks, the growing pool of Asia’s high-net individuals, and the developing pension and mutual funds.

“Until now we have focused on the retail investment market, insurance and corporate finance,” he said.

Galliano established Covenant in 2005 and is the 99 percent shareholder, but only took the chief executive position in late 2009 after departing from his position as head of ANZ Royal’s corporate banking relationships. He said the contraction of the financial markets during 2009 provided an opportunity to grow the business. QNB was unavailable for comment.

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