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  • Saudi Arabia buys sizeable stakes in Disney and other major foreign corporations

    Saudi Arabia buys stakes in Disney File Photo Saudi Arabia buys stakes in Disney

    Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund said in April that it was looking into “any opportunity” arising from the economic wreckage of the coronavirus crisis.

    The $320 billion Public Investment Fund, which until five years ago was a holding company for government stakes in domestic businesses, disclosed an $827.8 million stake in BP Plc, a $713.7 million investment in Boeing Co. and $522 million positions in both Citigroup Inc. and Facebook Inc. at the end of the first quarter.

    Other bets include $495.8 million on Walt Disney Co. and $487.6 million on Bank of America Corp, revealed a Bloomberg report in this regard.

    Behind the scenes, as coronavirus outbreaks disrupted commerce and drove stock prices to their lowest levels in years, the fund reassigned staff to find bargains to broaden its global portfolio, people familiar with the plan have said.

    The investments disclosed in a quarterly filing Friday amount to a bet that marquee names of the corporate world will rebound as many facets of life return to normal.

    Other holdings described by the fund include a $513.9 million investment in hotel owner Marriott International Inc. that’s even greater than the PIF’s previously disclosed wager on cruise operator Carnival Corp.

    Both companies are contending with a virtual shutdown in global travel. Similarly, the fund gathered a $416.1 million stake in concert promoter Live Nation Entertainment Inc., which faces bans on large gatherings.

    The fund also amassed shares of Canadian oil sands players Suncor Energy Inc. and Canadian Natural Resources Ltd., on top of investments that previously emerged in Equinor ASA, Royal Dutch Shell Plc, Total SA and Eni SpA.

    The regulatory filing disclosed the fund held almost $10 billion of U.S. equities, including an approximately $2 billion position in Uber Technologies Inc.

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