Sweden’s second-largest pension fund AMF announced it is forming a new joint venture, alongside bank SEB and FAM, the holding company of the Wallenberg foundations, to invest SEK3.5bn (€333m) in unlisted domestic firms under pressure from the pandemic-induced economic crisis.

The SEK622bn blue-collar pension fund said it had put in SEK2bn to the new company, named Sindre Invest, which would mainly invest in privately and family-owned companies that did not have access to the stock market.

AMF said in a statement: “Sindre will invest in medium-sized Swedish companies that were successful before the crisis and are expected to be so again when the economy returns to normal.”

The pension fund said investment targets would be firms with at least 250 employees and turnover of over SEK300m, with Sindre Invest becoming a minority shareholder. The stated aim would be for firms to be able to repurchase the shares when the crisis was over.

Johan Sidenmark, AMF chief executive officer, said: “I am very pleased that together with like-minded partners we can vigorously expand and broaden our efforts to invest in viable Swedish companies that are in need of capital to get through the economic crisis we are in.”

At the beginning of April, the pension fund announced it was preparing to invest billions of kronor over the coming months, to support local firms it viewed as long-term investments during the pandemic, earmarking SEK5bn as a first step.

The fund followed up on the pledge by by investing SEK114.5m in a capital placement deal for struggling Swedish brake-component maker Haldex in May.

AMF said SEB had invested SEK1bn in Sindre Invest, with FAM and the Wallenberg Foundations putting in SEK500m – totalling SEK3.5bn including AMF’s SEK2bn contribution.

It said SEB would also be contributing staff to the joint venture – to get business started quickly by 1 July – with Sindre Invest hiring those with relevant experience in investing, credit management, equity and debt financing.

Jan Amethier, head of SEB’s tech finance business, will take up the role of CEO, AMF said.

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