Abraaj closes $375m North African investment fund

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Growth market investment group Abraaj has announced the final close of its second dedicated North Africa private equity fund at US$375 million, taking its total raised money this year to US$1.37 billion.

Disrupt Africa reported in April Abraaj had closed its third dedicated Sub-Saharan Africa private equity fund at US$990 million, aiming to focus on growth investments in businesses supporting the rapidly growing urban consumer class.

The group is now refocusing on North Africa with the Abraaj North Africa Fund II (ANAF II), which targets well-managed, mid-market businesses in Algeria, Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia that have demonstrated robust growth and have the ability to become regional leaders in their field.

It follows the investment strategy of its predecessor, the Abraaj North Africa Fund I, and will target both majority and significant minority stakes in businesses that allow the group to influence the strategic direction and growth agenda of its investee companies.

Abraaj said ANAF II had received support from a diverse group of new and existing investors, including global institutional investors, pension funds, sovereign wealth funds and development finance institutions. Six investments have already been made across its target markets in the education, healthcare and industrial sectors.

“The successful closing of our second generation North Africa Fund demonstrates the continued optimism and belief of our investors in the economic growth and development of this dynamic region. North Africa has the highest income level on the continent with a middle class that is expected to double its total consumption between 2014 and 2024, leading to the creation of further investment opportunities across diverse sectors,” said Arif Naqvi, founder and group chief executive of the Abraaj Group.

“By leveraging our deep local knowledge, global underwriting standards and successful track record, we are well positioned to identify and partner with high growth businesses that we can develop into regional champions. We look forward to investing this fund successfully and thank our investors for the confidence they have shown in Abraaj.”

Over the last decade Abraaj has committed around US$3 billion in Africa. The company has been investing in North Africa since 2006, and has made 23 investments across eight sectors as well as 11 full and partial exits. The group has a team of 14 investment and operating professionals across four offices in the region, in Egypt, Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia.

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