Oyak looks abroad following $2.67bn ING sale

Following the sale of Oyak Bank to Dutch bank ING, Turkish pension fund Oyak Group is looking for partners on a foreign joint venture as it looks to invest abroad.

Oyak Group, a Turkish pension fund that makes private equity-style direct investments, is seeking international partners as it looks to invest the money raised from its $2.67 billion (€2 billion) sale of Oyak Bank to ING last week.

Oyak was in London to present the group’s annual report, which revealed impressive figures. The pension fund made profits of $965 million in 2006, providing a 25.1 percent rate of return, all of which has been pumped back into the business. This is nearly three times the national consumer price index of 9.7 percent. 

The independent pension fund directly invests in buyouts on behalf of its 227 thousand members who are full time employees of the Turkish army.

Caner Oner, an executive vice president of Oyak, said in an interview with PEO: “With the sale to ING we will have a large influx of money to invest.” With the current level of foreign investment, big ticket items in Turkey will be priced properly, he added.

“We would like to be known in the international markets as a reliable partner, and we would be looking for international groups who would be open to a joint project that would fit our investment strategies,” Oner said. The ING deal, which was agreed on June 20, will be completed towards the second half of the year.

Oyak’s portfolio includes steel company Erdemir, which it acquired via a leveraged buyout for $2.96 billion. The pension fund won the battle to take Erdemir private following a publicity campaign that stressed the benefits of selling the business to a Turkish rather than a foreign investor.