German institutions turning from equities to alternatives – Universal survey

first_imgCurrently, the exposure to alternative investments is below 3% in the majority of portfolios of the surveyed institutions, which included Pensionskassen, Versorgungswerke, insurers, foundations and banks managing around €300bn in total assets.Universal pointed out that nearly one-third of respondents wanted to up their quota by more than 300 basis points.At the same time, the interest in real assets such as real estate and infrastructure remained strong, but only 31% said they wanted to increase investments in those segments compared with 43% last year.All in all, the surveyed institutions remained pessimistic about the global economic outlook, with 78% saying the financial crisis is not over yet five years on.More than 60% noted quantitative easing helped to buy time but did not solve structural problems, and they did not expect either the US Fed or the ECB to cut rates over the medium term. German institutions do not see an end of the low-interest rate environment any time soon and are planning to up their exposures to alternatives, a survey by Universal Investment has found.Among the 90 German institutions polled by the asset manager, 70% want to increase their exposure to alternatives, and 29% said they were looking at investments in private equity and loans.In a similar survey last year, only one-fifth of respondents were looking into alternatives, while one-third planned to increase their equities quotas.This year, the trend is reversed and “growing stronger”, Universal said.last_img read more

Tech accelerator to grow student companies

first_imgThe Viterbi Startup Garage, a technology accelerator aimed at growing startup companies run by USC students and alumni, is looking for its first crop of companies to assist and advise.Game time · Google VP of Social Products Bradley Horowitz speaks to students at a event hosted by the Viterbi Student Innovation Institute, which also encourages students to create their own start-ups. — Ralf Cheung | Daily TrojanThe Startup Garage, announced by Viterbi on March 26, is accepting applications through April 22; the 12-week summer program will begin May 28.Students in the program will receive expert mentoring, access to investors, working space and $20,000 in funding. Ashish Soni, the program’s director and a founding director of the Viterbi Student Innovation Institute, said two primary goals of the program were to help USC achieve its vision of developing the next big technology company and enable students to start successful companies.“One of the things we realized was that students need time, access to resources [in the form] of financial support systems, mentoring and coaching. It’s hard to get all of that in a semester,” Soni said.In addition to focusing their attention on the university, the program also seeks to encourage technology startups to stay in the Los Angeles area.“With the Viterbi Startup Garage, we aim to provide the support needed so that this talent can fully develop its potential and make Los Angeles and Southern Californiaone of the most vibrant technology startup regions in the world,” said Viterbi School of Engineering Dean Yannis C. Yortsos in a statement.Viterbi is partnering with Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, a leading venture capital firm, and United Talent Agency, a talent and literary agency, to run the program. As a part of the program, participants have access to the KPCB and UTA networks when they are building their companies.“Students will have access not just to capital, but to insight into building companies, insight into the market, into how you build successful companies,” Soni said. “[The combination of] a top engineering school, a top venture capital firm and a top business development talent agency is a unique combination that doesn’t exist anywhere else in the country.”Though other technology accelerators exist in Los Angeles, the Viterbi Startup Garage is unique in its focus on students and its link to a major university.“We’ll leverage our partners, our faculty and our alumni to help make these companies successful,” Soni said.This year the Viterbi Startup Garage will look at digital andsoftware-based companies, as well as hardward companies. Soni said the directors of the program are looking to increase the size of the program in the coming years.“The goal is to increase the number [of accepted companies], but this is the first year, so we want to start small, have some early success and grow from there,” Soni said.Founders of AIO Robotics Kai Chang and Jens Windau, both Ph.D. students in computer science who applied to the program, hope that their company is one of the few companies accepted into the program.Chang and Windau said the Viterbi Startup Garage’s association with USC and dedication to supporting students makes it very appealing to them.“We can trust the entire Viterbi community. The Trojan Family seems more comfortable to approach than someone who is not ‘related’ to you, necessarily,” Chang said.Jason Wei, the co-founder of Taggle and a junior majoring in business administration who applied to the program, said he hopes his company, which helps people find the best price for printing custom T-shirts, is accepted into the program because of the technology accelerator’s extensive networks.Wei and his partners said the Viterbi Startup Garage’s resources could help their business grow rapidly, and that they would use the $20,000 funding to reach college campuses beyond USC and UCLA.“[We are] trying to scale aggressively this summer. In order to do that, we’re going to need office space, we’re going to need financial resources and moving onto the next stage is also much easier with great mentors, which this program offers,” Wei said.Any current USC students or alumni who graduated from USC within the past five years may apply, as long as at least one co-founder or CEO is a Viterbi student or alumnus.last_img read more

Kambi confident that strengthened commercial pipeline will overcome current trading woes

first_img Presenting its Q3 2017 trading update (period ending 30 September), Nordic Nasdaq-listed Kambi Group Plc has detailed a robust corporate performance despite trading against a tough Q3 2016 comparative period featuring the UEFA Euro 2016 Championships.Updating investors, Kambi sustained a positive period revenue performance of €14.8 million, which sees the sports betting platform supplier generate €43 million for its year-to-date trading.Despite the firm’s positive revenue momentum, Kambi continues to be affected by lower operating margin declines due to adverse sporting results recorded across its client portfolio. A lower group operating margin of 7% (2016: 21%), would see Kambi declare a period operating EBIT of €1.1 million (Q3 2016: €3.1 million).Closing its Q3 2017 trading period, Kambi governance would declare group profits (after tax) of €800,000 (Q3 2016: €2.7 million).Detailing operational highlights, Kambi governance stated that the firm continues to strengthen its commercial pipeline adding new regulated ‘teir1 clients’ to its portfolio including Colombia’s Corredor Empresial and Bulgaria’s National Lottery operator which has launched 7777.bg with Kambi as lead platform supplier.As the firm expands its commercial footprint and secures further platform supplier contract renewals with LeoVegas and Paf, Kambi CEO Kristian Nylén states that his firm has the capabilities to deliver long-term growth its current downturn.Kristian Nylén Kambi CEO commented on Q3 2017 corporate performance “In many ways, Q3 could be viewed as a springboard quarter for Kambi. I’m pleased to report Kambi was able to continue its progress, with operator turnover rising 16% year-on-year versus a period which included the final stages of Euro 2016 and the Olympic Games.“Furthermore, this growth was delivered in the context of an unusually high operator margin of 7.5%, and means our margin for the first nine months of the year is 6.6% – a figure which falls within our projected annual range of 6.5-7%. This strengthens our belief that while margins will fluctuate due to the outcome of sporting events, we don’t see any long-term trends that suggest any continued downward pressure.”“The period saw us face a particularly tough revenue comparative in terms of both an equally strong trading margin in Q3 2016 and the impact of the 888sport contract renewal. Despite these factors, we still managed to post revenues on a par with Q3 last year.”“I’m pleased that I can once again say we have signed a new partner, this time in the shape of Bulgaria’s National Lottery, the country’s largest privately-owned gaming operator. This represents the seventh consecutive quarter in which Kambi has added a new customer. We will provide National Lottery’s online 7777.bg brand, a market leader in gaming products, with our Sportsbook. Kambi is delighted to have been chosen by National Lottery and we expect to launch during the current quarter.” Kambi takes control of Churchill Downs BetAmerica sportsbook August 28, 2020 Kambi and DraftKings agree on final closure terms July 24, 2020 StumbleUpon Related Articles Submit Kambi takes full control of LeoVegas sportsbook portfolio August 26, 2020 Share Sharelast_img read more

Manchester City to play in Champions League next season after 2-year UEFA ban lifted on appeal

first_imgCity were initially punished by UEFA in February, when they were banned from competing in the Champions League or Europa League for two years and given a €30m fine for breaching Financial Fair Play rules.In its initial statement confirming City’s punishment, UEFA said that it found the Premier League club guilty of “overstating its sponsorship revenue in its accounts and in the break-even information submitted to UEFA between 2012 and 2016.”A statement from the CAS said City did not overstate their sponsorship contributions but did fail to cooperate with UEFA authorities.”Manchester City FC did not disguise equity funding as sponsorship contributions but did fail to cooperate with the UEFA authorities,” read the heading to the CAS statement.”The CAS award emphasized that most of the alleged breaches reported by the Adjudicatory Chamber of the CFCB were either not established or time-barred,” added CAS, which will publish its full written reasons over the coming days.”As the charges with respect to any dishonest concealment of equity funding were clearly more significant violations than obstructing the CFCB’s investigations, it was not appropriate to impose a ban on participating in UEFA’s club competitions for MCFC’s failure to cooperate with the CFCB’s investigations alone.”City responded to the verdict with a statement which read: “Whilst Manchester City and its legal advisors are yet to review the full ruling by the Court of Arbitration for Sport, the club welcomes the implications of today’s ruling as a validation of the club’s position and the body of evidence that it was able to present.”The club wishes to thank the panel members for their diligence and the due process that they administered.”UEFA’s Financial Fair Play regulations aim to maintain the financial health of European football clubs in order to avoid ruination of teams. This is effectively achieved by limiting the net losses a club is allowed to make over a specified time period.The ruling also has an impact on the clubs currently below City in the Premier League table.If the ban had been upheld, the team finishing in fifth place – currently occupied by Manchester United – would have qualified for the Champions League, with Europa League qualification extended to sixth and seventh.City immediately denied the Club Financial Control Body (CFCB)’s findings and initiated an appeal against the decision at the first opportunity, with club CEO Ferran Soriano emphatically declaring: “The allegations are not true. They are simply not true.” Manchester City will be able to play in next season’s Champions League after their two-year ban from UEFA competitions was lifted by the Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS).The club will still have to pay a fine, which has been reduced from €30 million ($33 million) to €10m ($11 million). UEFA’s investigation into the matter was prompted by the publication of a number of allegations by German magazine Der Spiegel, which drew on documents said to have been obtained by whistleblowers Football Leaks, in 2018.Animosity has been bubbling between the Premier League giants and European football’s governing body for almost a decade now, and the latest clash has further strained the relationship.Fans of City have made a habit of booing UEFA’s anthem when it is played ahead of Champions League games, something that has intensified since 2014, when the club first fell foul of Financial Fair Play.last_img read more