In News Highlight


Fundraising-related news dominated Africa’s private capital markets last week. While there were no fund closes, there were a couple of commitments and one launch.
Capitalworks, one of Africa’s larger private equity firms, has launched Africa Capitalworks, a planned $300 million investment company that will target mid-market opportunities in a number of sectors across sub-Saharan Africa. The new permanent capital vehicle has already received significant support and investment from, among others, CDC and Public Investment Corporation, South Africa’s largest asset manager and manager of the Government Employees Pension Fund.
Fresh from launching the Africa Infrastructure Fund with $550 million in August, A.P. Moller Capital announced it had raised an additional $100 million from PFA Pension, Denmark’s largest pension fund. The fund, which is targeting $1 billion in time for a final close at the end August next year, will back infrastructure opportunities across Africa, aiming to deliver returns in the high teens as well as deliver significant economic, social and governance impact in the assets and regions in which it invests.

The European Investment Bank is committing $15 million to Ezdehar Management‘s inaugural fund, the Egypt Mid-Cap Fund, bringing the total raised to date to $85 million. The EIB is the latest of a number of European DFI’s investing in the fund, joining CDC and FMO on the fund’s roster of investors. Egypt Mid-Cap’s strategy is to target growth capital opportunities in private companies and family enterprises in the North African country.
The IFC’s board is set to review a potential €15 million commitment to Partech Ventures‘ Africa fund which will make equity and equity-related investments in exchange for minority stakes in rapidly growing companies. By final close, the early stage venture capital fund hopes to have raised €100 million (almost $110 million) to back digital and technology startups in sub-Saharan Africa as well as non-African businesses who have significant operations on the continent.
In deal news, Apis Private Equity is backing Nigeria’s Bankers Warehouse with a reported $30 million in exchange for a significant, if undisclosed stake. The deal, which was led for Apis by Lagos-based partner, Rotimi Oyekanmi, is the sixth investment for the firm’s inaugural fund, Apis Growth Fund I, which closed with $287 million in March this year.
Arise, the $660 million financial services investment platform launched earlier this year, is taking a 12% stake in publicly-listed Equity Group Holdings, the parent company of Equity Bank. The new entity cam about following an agreement between CDC, Norfund and  Rabobank to combine their stakes in financial services companies in more than 20 countries on the continent and use the new platform to take minority stakes in additional companies.
In venture capital news, Spark Venture Fund, Safaricom’s $1 million venture investment vehicle, is making its sixth and final investment and backing iProcure in an undisclosed deal. The deal is the second agribusiness transaction for the fund, which backed FarmDrive earlier this year. Launched in 2014, Spark Venture Fund’s strategy has been to make late-seed to early-growth stage investments in startups which use mobile technology as an enabler. More than 600 applicants approached the fund, of which just 6 have received backing.
Job change news from Sanne Group, a provider of outsourced corporate and fund administration services, which has appointed Oliver Morris as head of Private Equity for the EMEA region. Prior to joining Sanne at the beginning of this month, Morris had worked for KPMG in the Channel Islands, most recently as a Director focusing on the private equity sector. He will be based in the firm’s offices in the Channel Island of Jersey.