Khazanah Nasional has been found to have invested around RM80 million in a failed online lingerie business. This was according to the minister for economic affairs Datuk Seri Azmin Ali, in reply to Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, who asked how the sovereign wealth fund had moved away from its agenda, The Star reported.
Datuk Seri Azmin Ali explained that Khazanah invested in an online business which sells lingerie and bras, which eventually winded, with losses having to be written off. He also called for a revamp of the fund to ensure it goes back to its aim to taking care of national assets on behalf of all Malaysians and focus on the Bumiputra agenda.
Most recently, all members of the board at Khazanah resigned, including the managing director. Confirming the move, the company added that this was done to facilitate a smooth and orderly transition under the new government.
“The current board has been honoured to serve, and feels it appropriate to offer the new government the discretion and reaffirm the prerogative to form the new board. We will issue a further statement once we have further details of the reconstitution of the Board,” the statement read.
Following the move, Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad took on the chairman role with immediate effect. The board also appointed Mohamed Azmin Ali, Mohd Hassan Marican, Sukhdave Singh and Goh Ching Yin as directors, ChannelNews Asia reported. The managing director role has yet to be filled and will be announced later.
In June, Khazanah was among other investors such as Singapore’s GIC and Temasek for Small and Micro Financial Services Group Co (Ant Financial). This follows the company’s Series C equity funding which totalled approximately US$14 billion. The funds raised were used to Alipay’s globalisation plans and invest in developing technology.