AfDB, largest investor of Private Equity Investment fund to support SMEs in the Maghreb

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The African Development Bank (AfDB) announced on 6 September  the first closing of the multi-sector private equity fund Maghreb Private Equity Fund III LLC (‘MPEF III’), with a size exceeding Euro 96 million of capital commitments alongside other Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) and institutional investors. The MPEF III is a third-generation multi-sector private equity fund that will target investments in Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Maghreb.

Fulfilling its counter-cyclical role in a difficult global fund raising environment, the AfDB provided Euro 20 million to MPEF III, the largest equity share of the first closing.  “This year, AfDB will bring around USD 80 million of equity and debt finance to striving SMEs in North Africa, mainly Tunisia. We said we would back the region in times of trial and crisis, we are on the right path” said Mouhamadou Niang, AfDB Manager, Industry and Services, Private Sector Operations.

Other investors in the MPEF III include prestigious DFIs and institutional investors such as FMO (the Dutch Bank for Development), the International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group, CDC Entreprises Elan PME (leading institutional investor in private equity funds in France and affiliate of the Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations of France), DEG (the German Development Agency), Proparco (Affiliate of the French Development Agency), SIFEM (the Swiss Investment Fund for Emerging Markets), BIO (the Belgian Development Investment Company) and Averroes Finance II.  

MPEF III is a 10-year fund managed by the TunInvest-AfricInvest Group, with a target size of Euro 150 million. It will target investments in Small and Medium Enterprises already well-established in their local markets in Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia and Libya and, on an opportunistic basis, Egypt, and that have the potential to scale up their activities at the regional level. By investing in companies showing a significant potential to grow, MPEF III will contribute to creating new jobs, promoting corporate governance, increasing foreign-exchange receipts, generating tax revenues for the governments of the region and more generally to regional economic integration in North Africa.

“We thank our investors for their trust and support, particularly at this critical juncture for the Region which brings a number of tough challenges but also seeds of hope for a better and brighter future, and we firmly believe that MPEF III will make a significant contribution towards addressing the most pressing needs of the region:  growth, job creation and governance” said Ziad Oueslati, co-founder of TunInvest - AfricInvest Group.

MPEF III will be investing in a broad variety of sectors with a strong focus on manufacturing for export and companies aiming at expanding at the regional or continental level. The targeted investments will also include sectors such as Information Technology and telecoms, services, health, education, transport and agribusiness.

About the African Development Bank

The AfDB Group’s mission is to help reduce poverty, improve living conditions for Africans and mobilize resources for the continent’s economic and social development. With this objective in mind, the institution aims at assisting African countries – individually and collectively - in their efforts to achieve sustainable economic development and social progress. Combating poverty is at the heart of the continent’s efforts to attain sustainable economic growth. To this end, the Bank seeks to stimulate and mobilize internal and external resources to promote investments as well as provide its regional member countries with technical and financial assistance.

The Industry and Services division of the Bank’s Private sector department aims at investing in private equity funds involved in a variety of sectors including agriculture, mining, manufacturing, health, education to attract private sector investments in Africa. In the past three years, the Private sector department has approved 27 equity funds for an amount in excess of 400 million dollars in infrastructure, health as well as in generalist funds. The AfDB group seeks sustained continued growth of its member countries through better infrastructure, stronger private sector, more robust institutions and greater economic integration.

About TunInvest-AfricInvest Group

TunInvest-AfricInvest Group was founded in 1994 and is today a leading private equity firm in North and sub-Saharan Africa with over 700 million dollars of assets under management and sponsored by prestigious DFIs, private and institutional investors. TunInvest–AfricInvest Group relies on a team of 40 highly skilled investment professionals with over 120 years of cumulative PE experience, operating out of 6 offices in Tunis, Casablanca, Algiers, Lagos, Abidjan and Nairobi. The TunInvest-AfricInvest Group is the co-founder of the African Venture Capital Association, the MENA PE Association  and a member of the Euromed Capital Forum

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