Keppel sets sights on private equity, infrastructure in shift to be asset management powerhouse

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SINGAPORE – As Keppel shifts its focus towards becoming an asset manager, chief executive Loh Chin Hua said the group is exploring opportunities in private equity markets and infrastructure.

The move is part of its ongoing efforts to develop steady streams of recurring income.

By expanding both its recurring income and margins, Keppel will get “much closer” to its return-on-equity target of 15 percent on a sustainable basis, Mr Loh said in Keppel’s financial year 2023 annual report.

“This is a target that we are confident of achieving well before 2030,” he continued.

Mr Loh acknowledged that private equity markets have experienced some headwinds in the past few years from fears of recession and elevated interest rates.

However, he said the easing of inflation and stabilisation of interest rates mean that market liquidity should gradually improve in the later part of 2024, which could signal more opportunities for fund-raising and dealmaking.

Despite improvements in market conditions, limited partners (LPs) are expected to remain highly selective of investment strategies and asset classes, with a preference for sectors underpinned by resilient macrotrends, such as the energy transition, climate action and digitalisation.

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