As Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund, GIC invests the country’s foreign reserves to secure its financial future. It is among the world’s largest fund management companies with well over US$100 billion in assets, with a portfolio spanning six core asset classes across more than 40 countries worldwide.
People are the heart of GIC’s business, and talent critical to its success. One way the organisation continues to secure talented team players is through its scholarship programme. The GIC Scholarship comprises not only a financial component, but hands-on learning and mentorship opportunities. This has offered scholars, such as Sylvester Wee, a head start in the fund management industry.
Currently an Associate in Private Equity, Sylvester’s job in GIC exposes him to a variety of industries and allows him to work on investments ranging from technology to healthcare. Together with his team, he focuses on sourcing investments that can generate sustainable long-term returns. A memorable career moment involved having to make an informed investment decision about a large, reputable consumer company within a short time period based on limited information. His team immediately flew to China to meet with management and gather on-the-ground information before completing the due diligence, finalising negotiations and securing the approval required to close the deal.
Sylvester Wee Min
GIC Scholar, Associate
(Funds & Co-Invesments Group - Asia)
Before Sylvester found his calling at GIC, he was a hopeful graduate from junior college searching for the next step in life. When researching scholarships, the organisation stood out because he felt it was able to provide a platform to further his interests in investments and business. He believed that through GIC, he would be exposed to “cutting-edge technology and also companies of various sizes, sectors and strategies.”
The opportunities afforded to Sylvester were far-reaching. With his scholarship, Sylvester read Economics at the Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania, a prestigious Ivy League university. The university challenged his intellectual capacity through cross-field exploration, and he eventually graduated with a quadruple concentration in Finance, Accounting, Real Estate, and Operations & Information Management.
He was also fortunate to attend fully-funded business research trips to Argentina, Chile, and the Dominican Republic during his days at Wharton. Sylvester met with various politicians, economists, business executives and university professors during those trips, which enabled him to synthesise papers contrasting the political and economic landscapes across those countries.
Academics aside, Sylvester continued pursuing his passion in competitive tennis. He represented the University of Pennsylvania in the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I tennis, competing across the U.S. in various tournaments.
Sylvester has been empowered with a fair amount of responsibility since starting his career at GIC, and the collaborative culture has allowed him to engage colleagues at all levels throughout the organisation. Professional development and learning opportunities have also been abundant. He interned over two summer breaks and rotated through various departments – Public Equities, Economics and Investment Strategy, and Risk and Performance Management – during his first year as a full-time investment professional.
Employee well-being and holistic development are also key for GIC, and employees are encouraged to participate in a variety of activities. Alongside colleagues from other departments, Sylvester represented GIC in running and dragon boating events such as the Bloomberg Square Mile Relay, Singapore River Regatta, DBS Regatta and Saba Sprints. These engagements have not only facilitated strong partnerships across teams, but firm and lasting friendships.