Singaporeans should be proud of Temasek Holdings, the envy of every investor in the world. This is because it has produced outsized returns other savvy investors could only dream of.
Formed in 1974, Temasek has been making tons of money year in, year out, rain or shine. Even after it had lost tens of billions, out of nowhere, it was able to make tens of billions more than the lost billions.
Foreign media has so much respect for Temasek that investigative journalism doesn’t apply to Temasek’s unverifiable claims, which have over decades become facts.
Temasek’s unique strategy lies in the ability to throw unlimited billions of tax dollars at privatisation/delisting.
For example, when Olam shares were heading south for 4 years since 2010 to below $1.50 last year, Temasek came up with a US$2.1 billion offer to take it private at $2.23 a piece. Fortunately for taxpayers, it managed to spend only US$1.5 billion and increased its stake to only 80%. Temasek had also wanted to take NOL private in 2004 but managed to boost its stake to only 68%.
Unfortunately for Temasek, taxpayers are currently able to witness its folly. Nevertheless, how many investors can stomach such a huge paper loss? Not forgetting, if Olam shares plumb new lows, Temasek still has the option of offering another 50% premium to the future prevailing lower price to take Olam private, again. Similarly, it is taking Tiger Airways private after years of losses. There will be one less losers in Temasek’s stable. Temasek is indeed the greatest investor.
As for significant losses in Suzhou, Micropolis, Chartered Semiconductor, Stats Chippac, Merrill Lynch, Barclays, ABC Learning Centre, Stuyvesant Town, etc these are non issues. Temasek says it has already made back all the losses, no questions asked. How many fund managers are able to tell more than 3.4 million clients off in such a manner?
For 4 decades, NOL has been Temasek’s sick baby: its share price is only 25% of its market price, post listing some 3 decades. Tens of billions, in today’s prices, have been invested in NOL which has been warded in ICU countless times. Unfortunately, the greatest minds in Temasek had not been able to nurse it back to health and decided to give it up for adoption last year.
The point is how many investors have lost tens of billions but still able to increase its portfolio value to more than a quarter trillion last year?
Temasek is definitely in a league of its own with a unique strategy of maintaining a winners-only portfolio through delisting/privatisation. Singaporeans should be proud to have the greatest fund manager of all time.
On behalf of every citizen, thank you Temasek.