Global alternative asset manager The Carlyle Group on 24 March announced that it has established a team to conduct buyout and growth capital investments in Sub-Saharan Africa. The initial target for the new fund is $500 million, according to Reuters (although the Financial Times earlier put the target at $750 mn and said there will also be an office in Zimbabwe). Carlyle has $97.7 billion under management including $16.6 bn in emerging markets. The news comes at a time when some major private equity funds are also being raised.
The Carlyle SSA team will make buyout and growth capital investments in private and public companies from offices in Johannesburg and Lagos, focusing on transactions where Carlyle has distinctive competitive advantage and can create tangible value for the companies invested into. It would aim to contribute specialized knowledge of industries, to add expertise and give access to a global network. Initial target industries include consumer goods, financial services, agriculture, infrastructure and energy.
The team is jointly led by Managing Directors Marlon Chigwende (former Managing Director & Head of Private Equity Africa for Standard Chartered Bank), and Danie Jordaan (former Executive Committee Member and Partner of Ethos Private Equity). The team also includes Managing Director Genevieve Sangudi (most recently a Partner and Managing Director of Emerging Capital Partners with some of the biggest private equity funds going into Africa). Mr. Jordaan begins his duties immediately while Mr. Chigwende and Ms. Sangudi will begin in early May.
Greg Summe, Carlyle Managing Director and Vice Chairman of Global Buyout, said in a press release: “Sub-Saharan Africa is one of the fastest growing regions in the world, driven by favorable demographics, expanding domestic industries and an improving political environment. Carlyle’s SSA team comprises African nationals with deep market knowledge, broad networks across the continent and extensive experience in private equity transactions. The Africa team’s expertise should be a powerful combination with Carlyle’s deep industry experience and global platform.”
Co-head Danie Jordaan said, “We are excited to join Carlyle, with its demonstrated ability to build thriving private equity businesses across emerging markets. As SSA gains from political and economic reforms, demand for basic services and infrastructure is dramatically increasing. The entrance of a global player like Carlyle into SSA is a testament to the region’s progress and prospects and will attract more capital and talent to the region. We also believe Carlyle’s global network will facilitate the growth of its SSA investments in the major international markets.”
Carlyle has a formidable reputation for its ability to raise funds.
Carlyle’s Commitment to Emerging Markets
Carlyle is based in Washington DC. According to the company’s press release, since Carlyle first began investing in Asia in 1999, it has deployed significant capital and resources in markets including South America, China, India, South East Asia and Middle East and North Africa. It set up a Middle East North Africa team in November 2006 and finished raising $500 mn in funds for this in 2009.
Since 1999, Carlyle has invested $6.4 bn in equity and has $16.6 bn in assets under management in emerging markets. It employs 160 professionals in 12 offices in 9 emerging market countries.