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Private Equity in Singapore | Top Firms List | Salary | Jobs

Updated on May 30, 2024
Article byWallstreetmojo Team
Edited byAaron Crowe
Reviewed byDheeraj Vaidya, CFA, FRM

Private Equity In Singapore Overview

Private Equity in Singapore is one of the most significant platforms for fund managers across the globe to invest in. The best thing about the private equity market in Singapore is that it is well-regulated, and the rules and regulations keep on evolving to help market players be more aware of how everything works and thereby ensure more profits in exchange for their investments.

Private Equity in Singapore

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Source: Private Equity in Singapore | Top Firms List | Salary | Jobs (wallstreetmojo.com)

Singapore offers a well-regulated platform where fund managers from Asia-Pacific region can consider investing in. The country has been found securing a major amount of investment in the private equity market and attracted an investment of $13 billion in total, including $7.1 billion in non-publicly traded firms.

Private Equity in Singapore Explained

The private equity market in Singapore is better than the investment banks in Singapore. But still, since 2014, the Singapore private equity market has been experiencing a slump. And as a result, Indonesia and Vietnam are growing stronger in private equity activity.

South Asian merger and acquisition activity has increased, and the market improved by $32.8 billion due to 252 deals. However, merger and acquisition activities in Singapore have been declining. Mergermarket report also explains the same – the Singapore market, which was a key market for buyout deals, has been waning in influence and market share.

The only difference between Singapore and the other two countries (Indonesia and Vietnam) seems to be one. The family-owned businesses in Singapore want to hold onto their reign and do not want to grow bigger (that is why most of the deals in private equity in Singapore are in the middle market, and most deals are under $300 million).

On the other hand, the other two countries (Indonesia and Vietnam) have aimed to expand their businesses in emerging markets. For example, SALIM, an Indonesian-based company, and Thailand’s Chearavanont have planned to expand their horizons in emerging markets. And also, Indonesia and Vietnam have closed deals worth $1.3 billion and $91 million, respectively.

But that does not mean that the Singapore market is not fit to work for and grow your private equity career. You can still grow and learn to master deals in the middle market. Maybe the market will grow in the future, and Singapore private equity firms will close better and bigger deals.

Singapore’s private equity market has been experiencing a decline, but that does not mean Singapore is not a good place to work in private equity. People from other countries get attracted to work in the private equity market in Singapore for two main reasons: –

  • First, the Singapore government has ensured the economy’s stability, and many new businesses are being established now and then.
  • Second, the learning curve and salaries in Singapore private equity are higher than in other private equity markets globally.

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Services

As you know that private equity firms provide a wide range of services. Here is a list of a few key services that stand out: –

  • Investments and advisory in scalable businesses: In Singapore, the Government gives new business owners many opportunities to build their businesses and earn great profits. Private equity firms have also decided to assist these businesses in growing and making their mark. Most of the top-notch private equity firms are built by entrepreneurs, and they can understand how hard the path of entrepreneurship is. Thus, they provide funding assistance and advisory to competitive, scalable new businesses.
  • Investments in M&A deals: Through slim merger and acquisition activities, private equity firms (even the bulge bracket ones) still want to take advantage of the synergy of private companies. Thus, there is fierce competition to win deals among private equity firms in merger and acquisition buyouts deals.
  • Investments in particular industries: Singapore’s private equity firms do not judge among sectors. They invest both in growing and traditional sectors. But there are a few specific industries that private equity firms in Singapore always aim at. Petrochemical, medical devices and services, pharmaceuticals, environmental engineering, and other manufacturing sectors.
  • Investments in different stages of businesses: Most of the private equity in Singapore invests in various stages of companies. But the top-notch ones are choosy in deciding which companies to invest in. Most of the time, they find businesses that are at their expansion stage (want to expand but do not have the funds), have competitive advantages in the market, and at the same time would be scalable after developing to yield higher returns for private equity firms. As many investment opportunities are always in the pipeline, most private equity firms must choose the right deals to ensure maximum returns.

List of Top Private Equity Firms in Singapore

Since 1992, Singapore Venture Capital & Private Equity Association (SVCA) has been established to provide private equity and venture capital firms benefits like free registration in events, Preqin databases, and discounted entries in workshops and events organized by SVCA.

On their website, they have created a list of private equity and venture capital firms that have offices in Singapore and are, at the same, fully operational. Here is a list of top private equity firms in Singapore that have held in the private equity and venture capital market in Singapore (in alphabetical order): –

  1. 3i Investments PLC
  2. 3V SourceOne Capital PTE Ltd.
  3. Abraaj Capital Asia PTE Ltd.
  4. Adams Street Partners, LLC
  5. Affinity Equity Partners (S) PTE Ltd.
  6. AIGF Advisors PTE Ltd.
  7. AISB Holdings PTE Ltd.
  8. Al Salam Asia Pacific PTE Limited
  9. Altair Capital Advisors PTE Ltd.
  10. Ancora Capital Management PTE Ltd.
  11. Ardian Investment Singapore PTE Ltd.
  12. Aris Prime Partners Asset Management PTE Ltd.
  13. Axiom Asia Private Capital PTE Ltd.
  14. Bain & Company S.E. Asia Inc.
  15. Baring Private Equity Asia PTE Ltd.
  16. Capital Advisors Partners Asia PTE Ltd.
  17. CDH Investment Advisory Private Limited
  18. CLSA Capital Partners (Singapore) PTE Ltd.
  19. CMIA Capital Partners PTE Ltd.
  20. Credence Partners PTE Ltd.
  21. CVC Asia Pacific (Singapore) PTE Ltd.
  22. Deutsche Asset Management (Asia) Ltd.
  23. Emerging Markets Investment Advisers PTE Ltd.
  24. EQT Partners Singapore PTE Ltd.
  25. Everstone Capital Asia PTE Ltd.
  26. First Alverstone Partners PTE Ltd.
  27. General Atlantic Singapore Fund Management PTE Ltd.
  28. GIC Special Investments PTE Ltd.
  29. Gobi Management (Singapore) PTE Ltd.
  30. Gordian Capital Singapore PTE Ltd.
  31. Heritas Capital Management PTE Ltd.
  32. iGlobe Partners (II) PTE Ltd.
  33. JAFCO Investment (Asia Pacific) Ltd.
  34. Jubilee Capital Management PTE Ltd.
  35. Jungle Ventures PTE Ltd.
  36. KK Investment Management PTE Ltd.
  37. KKR Singapore PTE Ltd.
  38. L Catterton Singapore PTE Ltd.

Regulations

What makes the private equity in Singapore work well is the regulation that keep on evolving. The Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) is the regulator of the financial markets in the country. According to the rules it has specified for the private equity in Singapore, fund managers must have a license to deal in thesze financial instruments unless they qualify for any exemption as such.

Some of the legislations that directly guide the private equity investors and related market players include the Securities and Futures Act, the SGX listings rules, the Takeover Code, the Companies Act, the Competition Act, the Employment Act to name a few. From the duration and valuation of investments to reporting to MAS, these regulations offer a clear understanding of what and whatnot to do while dealing in private equity markets.

Above all, unlike US private equity markets, the private equity in Singapore is more about maintaining transparency that following rules.

Recruitment Process

If you are a foreign graduate and trying to get into the private equity market in Singapore, your chances are getting an entry-level job is not easy. Yes, we are talking about a full-time job in any private equity firm in Singapore. But first, you need to know many key people in private equity firms to pitch and make your voice heard. Moreover, the interview process would be tougher as the firms do not want to hire a sub-standard candidate. And let us say you have got through the interview and impressed the top management with your candidature. Still, it would help if you worked as an intern for a while. This period is called a “probation period.” During this probation period, candidates are judged by putting them into a real job and testing their existing skills. You will be hired as an entry-level full-time employee if you can prove yourself during probation. Thus, you can understand that getting into private equity in Singapore is not pretty easy.

Aggressive networking:

So, what is the answer to cutting the curve and making your voice heard? The answer is aggressive networking. This sort of networking is not very common in the western market. But you must do it here, especially if you come from a different country. It would help if you started by looking at the list of private equity firms, managing their contact details, and then finding out the key decision-makers in the firms. Then it would be best if you tried to connect with them and build rapport. You can do that by cold calling or face-to-face meetings. You will be rejected a lot, and you must have hard skin to undergo this kind of treatment. If you can do this enough, you will eventually make the connections and receive an offer. Remember that all you need is one firm ready to accept your candidature. After that, you must create separate cover letters and resumes regarding the funds you are applying for. Aggressive networking is not easy. But if you are determined to enter into private equity in Singapore, this is the best way out.

Internships:

If you see that you cannot get a full-time job (as a foreigner, it would not be easy), try doing a couple of internships. Maybe eventually, the private equity firms which have hired you as an intern will go on to extend your terms and hire you as a full-time employee. Otherwise, you can show your internships as backgrounds and interests in working in the private equity industry.

Interviews:

The interview process is almost similar. First, you need to go through an application process. Then, if you are shortlisted, you need to go through a fit interview to prove that you are the right candidate for the job and the firm. Then you would be given 2-3 rounds of an interview where you need to present a case analysis and answer some technical questions. The second last round would be with the Managing Director and HR. Finally, if you are through, you may need to go through a likability test round (this round depends on the particular private equity firm), where you will be asked for an informal dinner and will be asked to gel with people in the firm. And they will monitor how you’re doing as a part of the firm.

Language:

Singapore is diverse, and it encourages multicultural backgrounds. So, it would not be like why you did not know Chinese or other languages. But yes, if you want to make your mark and stay ahead of the curve, working knowledge of Chinese will be helpful.

Culture

The culture of private equity in Singapore is different from western culture. Here, the teams are smaller. As a result, you would be able to get a lot of exposure in dealing with investments directly. In the USA or UK private equity firms, it is not easy for entry-level employees to gain experience dealing with top-notch investments. But in Singapore, it is very much prevalent.

However, there is a reason behind that. First of all, unlike the USA or the UK, many investments are already in the pipeline. So, the Managing Directors and partners do not get time to search through all of them to find the best deals. It is the job of entry-level employees. Secondly, the new employees do not need to source new investments as there are many pipeline investments. So they can invest more time and effort sorting through the right investments and get a lot of exposure early on.

In Singapore, the work culture is also not that intense. People work hard, but late nights are not very common, and there is a healthy work-life balance.

As the team is generally smaller, new employees can walk into any Managing Director’s room and ask questions they have been struggling with. As a result, you will grow much faster in private equity in Singapore than in any western private equity firm (even if the size of the deal is smaller).

Salaries

If you work in Singapore, you will earn a similar salary. However, as the taxes are light and the government helps build new businesses every day, you will be able to save a lot more (think about a stable and steady economy).

Private Equity in Singapore

source: robertwalters.com.sg

According to Robert Walters’ survey, we get a glimpse of the salaries of private equity professionals in Singapore.

As an entry-level employee, you won’t be involved in sourcing investments; thus, your main work would be to execute the investments. As an analyst, in 2015, they earned around S$80,000 to S$120,000 per annum. In 2016, it was around S$90,000 to S$130,000 per annum.

In 2015 and 2016, associates earned around S$150,000 to S$200,000 per annum for investment origination. In addition, the Vice President and Director have made around S$200,000 to S$300,000 per annum.

For investment execution, in 2015 and 2016, associates earned around S$130,000 to S$160,000 per annum and S$140,000 to S$170,000, respectively, and Vice Presidents and Directors made around S$180,000 to S$250,000 per annum.

Exit Opportunities

Exit opportunities in Singapore are usually two. But most people who work in private equity generally do not quit their job to seek another career opportunity. But, of course, there are exceptions.

Investment banking is the first exit opportunity since there is a huge opportunity in investment banking in Singapore (after private equity). And the second exit opportunity for which people quit their jobs is working in venture capital. In Singapore, there are quite a few venture capital firms.

This article has been a guide to overview of Private Equity in Singapore. We mention the list of top firms, regulations, salary, jobs, and recruitment process. You may also have a look at the following article to learn more about private equity: –