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Private debt finds its moment in Asia

New funds are attracting some of the world’s biggest investors to Asian private credit.

Indian Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Speaks at the Bloomberg India Economic Forum
Edelweiss group CEO Rashesh Shah. Source: Bloomberg via Getty Images

When, in September, the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan agreed to invest $350 million with Edelweiss Alternative Asset Advisors to put into Indian private credit, there was a sense of Asia’s industry finding its voice.

Private debt has for years been a story of potential rather than action in the region; one of the world’s gold-standard investors putting serious money not just into India but into a strategy that includes distressed assets in India is a landmark.

It is part of a rising trend.

This year, despite (or maybe because of) the backdrop of Covid, raisings have included $200 million for a private credit fund by Pierfront Capital in Singapore; $500 million by OCP Asia for a direct lending fund for Asian small and medium companies; a new mezzanine infrastructure debt programme for Asia by AMP Capital; and, in October, the formal launch of Edelweiss’s $900 million ESOF III private credit fund, within which much of the Ontario Teachers mandate will be deployed.


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