RHB AM targets RM400m for 2 new funds

By LYDIA NATHAN / Pic By ISMAIL CHE RUS

RHB Asset Management Sdn Bhd (RHB AM) has partnered China Asset Management (Hong Kong) Ltd (China AM-HK) and Allianz Global Investors (AllianzGI) to launch two new funds for the local market.

The funds — the RHB Shariah China Focus Fund and RHB Global Artificial Intelligence Fund — will provide long-term capital growth by investing in China Shariah-compliant equities and companies involved in the evolution of artificial intelligence (AI).

China AMC-HK is the first fund to invest in A-shares, as well as a diversified portfolio of China Shariah-compliant equities, consisting of China H-shares.

RHB AM regional head Eliza Ong said the asset management company hopes to achieve RM400 million subscriptions for both funds within the next 18 months.

“We expect RM200 million from each fund. The funds will be distributed through agency channels and value partners, as well as third parties,” she said after the launch in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

Ong said RHB AM will enlist additional partners to distribute the funds as the asset management company seeks to expand more Islamic products.

Ong said RHB AM’s alliance with China AM-HK would allow local investors to access the China market and the opportunities available in that country.

“Both our partners are leaders in their respective fields and we are excited to be able to partner them,” Ong added.

AllianzGI director Stephen Jue said they have been managing technology portfolio’s for many years and believed that now would be a good time to drive AI.

“AI is truly the future. Of all the sectors in venture capital so far, AI has been the biggest. We have seen some US$35 billion (RM147 billion) invested into it in the US alone. We will try and identify the best companies that will drive this,” he said.

Jue said most nations are encouraging companies to partner universities to create research and development centres for the use and the study of AI.

China AM-HK portfolio manager Raymond Jing said the fund will invest in Islamic liquid assets — such as Islamic money market instruments, Islamic deposits with financial institutions and Islamic collective investment schemes.

“China AM-HK has vast investment experience specialising in the A-shares market. We understand the market from top down and bottom up, which enables us to deliver leading investments value to our investors,” he said.

Jing said the current valuation of China’s equities has reached a historically low which is very tempting, especially for some of the sector leaders with strong year-on-year growth.

“Together with the ongoing inclusion of A-shares into global indices, it presents various opportunities and a good timing for investors,” he added.

“By combining our A-share expertise with RHB AM’s Shariah capability, we aim to capture these opportunities for investors in Malaysia and South-East Asia,” Jing said.

Meanwhile, Ong said RHB AM will be taking the RHB Shariah China Focus Fund into Indonesia in January next year.

“We are always exploring other markets to broaden our portfolio. We are hopeful that the fundraising will be better than the other countries.

“We already have meaningful distributors comprising local and foreign banks that operate in Indonesia and they have confirmed their take-up,” Ong said.