Direct investment positions held by captive financial institutions in Luxembourg affiliated to investment funds focusing on private equity or real estate

DateJanuary 2024
AuteurGabriele Di Filippo

This paper presents a new database of direct investment positions held through captive financial institutions (CFIs) in Luxembourg that are owned by (resident and non-resident) investment funds focusing on private equity or real estate. Compared to Di Filippo (2023), the new database is more comprehensive as it includes smaller CFIs with less than 500 million euros in total assets. Over 2011-2021, intra- Luxembourg investment positions were larger than foreign direct investment (FDI) positions (both inward and outward). Most of these intra-Luxembourg investment positions arise because investment funds use Luxembourg CFIs to structure their holdings and acquisitions across the globe. In 2021, only about 1% of the inward FDI position held through these CFIs is ultimately invested in targets located in Luxembourg. The outward FDI position held through these CFIs is invested in private companies (65%) or real estate assets (35%). While most investment fund sponsors are headquartered in the United States or in the United Kingdom, investment targets are mostly in Western Europe, with a focus on the euro area. Outward FDI in private equity targets companies that are quite dispersed across economic activities. In 2021, “Information, telecommunications and computer services” have the largest share (17%), followed by “Electricity, gas, water supply, recycling” (12%) and “Chemicals and non-metallic mineral products” (10%). Outward FDI in real estate is more concentrated by property type, with 45% in commercial buildings (office and retail properties), 24% in industrial buildings (in particular logistics properties) and 15% in residential properties. Targets in Luxembourg are mostly companies operating in finance and insurance activities (private equity) or office properties (real estate).

Keywords: Foreign direct investment, Captive financial institutions and money lenders, Sector S127, Investment funds, Private equity, Real estate 

JEL codes: C80, C81, F23, F30, G23, G32

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