John Vaske was hired by Temasek Holdings to oversee the Singapore state-owned investment firm’s push into North America.
Mr. Vaske, most recently a co-chairman of global mergers and acquisitions at Goldman Sachs Group, will start Jan. 16 as joint head of North America at Temasek International, the company said in a statement on its website late Thursday. Dilhan Pillay, the current Americas head, will continue to provide oversight on Temasek’s investment activities in North America and Latin America, the company said.
Temasek is reshaping its investment mix amid feeble global growth and elevated market volatility. As part of that shift, Temasek is stepping up investments in the U.S. and Canada and said in July it plans to open an office in San Francisco this year to scout for tech investment opportunities. It already has an office in New York.
During the fiscal year ended March 31, Temasek loaded up on stakes in U.S. pharmaceutical and health-care firms, including Alexion Pharmaceuticals and Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, which develop treatments for serious medical conditions. The share of North America investments increased to 10% of Temasek’s portfolio as of March, up from 8% two years earlier. As of March 31, Temasek’s portfolio stood at S$242 billion ($179 billion).
The investment firm also reported in July that as a group, technology, media and telecommunications overtook financial firms as its biggest industry sector for the first time in a decade.