Canada’s largest profession pension fund Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan (OTPP) is planning to open a new office in Hong Kong next year, according to a Bloomberg report. This will be its third office outside Toronto as the fund already has two offices in London and New York.

OTPP has been looking to increase its allocation to emerging markets and has made a commitment to the maiden private equity fund being raised by Kedaara Capital Advisors LLP. Kedaara Capital has been set up by former Temasek India head Manish Kejriwal and General Atlantic India’s former managing director Sunish Sharma. The firm has partnered with Clayton, Dubilier and Rice (CD&R) to launch the fund in India.

OTPP has joined its peers Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) in taking the fund-of-funds route to invest in India. With $117.1 billion assets as of December 31, 2011, it is an independent organisation that invests the pension fund’s assets and administers the pensions of 300,000 active and retired teachers in Ontario. It also has $12 billion of invested capital private investment arm called Teachers’ Private Capital (TPC).

OTPP’s private equity portfolio was valued at $12.2 billion as of December 31, 2011, which includes direct private equity investments, as well as investments in private equity funds. OTPP has already made investments in private equity funds in Japan, China and South Korea. Pension funds and investors from Canada are increasingly looking at investments in India even as the country’s GDP growth is at its slowest in almost a decade.

CPPIB, Canada’s largest pension fund with $161.6 billion in assets, made its debut in India by investing $100 million in Multiples Alternate Asset Management in 2010. It is currently looking at more investments in the country and has appointed former Credit Suisse and Morgan Stanley banker Vikram Gandhi to draw up its India investment strategies.

CDPQ, which has $157 billion under management, has also been active in the Indian equity markets. Although it has reportedly invested in Indian real estate funds, its plans to make direct real estate investments through SITQ India did not take off.

Canada’s Brookfield Asset Management, which has $150 billion in assets, also set up two joint ventures last year for investments in Indian infrastructure and real estate space. It is setting up a realty fund with Peninsula Land Ltd, a part of the Ashok Piramal Group, and has also tied up with Kotak Mahindra Group to raise a fund worth $300 million for investments in infrastructure projects.

(Edited by Sanghamitra Mandal)

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