Angola’s sovereign wealth fund increased its investments in private equity focused on sub-Saharan Africa last year and sharply cut exposure to developed market bonds, the fund said in a statement published on Thursday.
The fund said it had $4.7 billion under management at the end of last year, while audited results posted on its website showed it had $4.88 billion at the end of 2014.
The fund, known by its Portuguese acronym FSDEA, said 58 percent of the portfolio was invested in funds holding private equity – or unlisted securities and debt – in infrastructure, real estate, agriculture, timber, healthcare, mining and mezzanine capital, according to its investment update.
That is a significant increase from end-2014 private equity exposure of 34 percent, as per FSDEA’s website.
“More than half of Fundo Soberano de Angola’s portfolio is allocated to private equity investment funds, which are focused on domestic and regional business opportunities,” said the fund’s chairman Jose Filomeno dos Santos, who is the son of long-serving President Jose Eduardo dos Santos.
“These equity investments will position FSDEA’s capital ideally to generate new sources of revenue for Angola, as well as to support the development of new industries, beyond the crude oil production and trading.”
Almost a fifth of its investments in infrastructure projects was allocated to projects in Angola and Kenya, the statement said.
Investments in fixed income fell to less than a quarter of holdings from 56 percent a year ago. These consist predominantly of North American and European assets, FSDEA said.
Roughly half were sovereign bonds while another 19 percent was in corporate debt issued by financial institutions.
Africa’s second-largest oil exporter after Nigeria generates 40 percent of its gross domestic product from crude output, and its economy has been hammered by the steep drop in oil price, prompting government efforts to diversify its economy.
The $5 billion fund is still a long way from providing any sort of significant state funding buffer to the government, which is also in talks with the World Bank and International Monetary Fund about possible financial assistance.
(Reporting by Karin Strohecker; Editing by Toby Chopra)