RDIF appoints three Asian heavyweights to board

The $11.5bn government-backed investment vehicle has named leaders of three major Asian institutional investors to it International Advisory Board. 

The Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF) has appointed three new members to its International Advisory Board, all three from major Asian institutional investors, according to a firm statement.

The three new appointees are: Xiqing Gao, President of China Investment Corporation (CIC); Khaldoon Khalifa al-Mubarak, chief executive of Mubadala Development Company; and Ahmad Mohamed Al-Sayed, chief executive of the Qatar Investment Authority. The appointments are honorary, and each one will serve on the International Advisory Board of RDIF in addition to his current role.

RDIF currently has joint ventures with both CIC and Mubadala. In June 2012, RDIF and CIC set up a $2 billion to $4 billion joint venture fund, the Russia-China Investment Fund, to invest primarily in Russian and Chinese businesses with cross-border potential. The fund recently completed its first investment in Russia Forest Products for $200 million.

And just three weeks ago, RDIF inked a 50/50 joint venture with Abu Dhabi-based investment company Mubadala. The newly-created $2 billion co-investment fund will be targeting long-term investment opportunities in Russia, Infrastructure Investor reported earlier.

Prior to his role at CIC, Gao served as the deputy chairman for China’s National Council for the Social Security Fund (NSSF). Before that, he was also the deputy chairman of the China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC), and in the 1990s was chief executive and deputy chairman of Bank of China International, according to the RDIF statement.

Apart from his role at Mubadala, al-Mubarak is also the chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Affairs Authority, and holds the same role in the Emirates Nuclear Energy Corporation and in Emirates Aluminum.

Before joining the Qatar Investment Authority, Al-Sayed worked for its subsidiary international investment house Qatar Holding. He has also served as the vice chairman of the Qatar Exchange and board member of London-focused property group Canary Wharf Group since 2009, the statement added.

RDIF, which operates as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Russian bank Vnesheconombank, has been amassing joint ventures incessantly for the past few months. Over the last 12 months it has deployed $700 million in deals and attracted another $2 billion altogether, according to Sean Glodek, a director at RDIF.