Actis, a leading private equity investor in emerging markets, has won African Private Equity Firm of the Year 2007 in Private Equity International magazine’s annual awards. The award is given to the best private equity firm operating in the region as voted for by investors, advisors, investee companies and other stakeholders.
Commenting on the award Actis Senior Partner Paul Fletcher said: “This award is a testimony to the hard work and significant commitment made by all Actis people over the past 12 months and of course in particular our 30 colleagues operating in Africa. While the accolade recognises our achievements in Africa, it also reflects our integrated firm-wide approach and the high standards we set across all the markets we operate in. We are determined to make Actis the undisputed leading private equity investor in emerging markets.”
Actis has enjoyed a year of unprecedented growth worldwide in 2007 with US$3.5 billion of funds under management, in a growing portfolio of private equity, infrastructure and real estate investments. Africa continues to be a core part of Actis’s success, with over US$1.5 billion invested in 19 African countries.
Across Africa during 2007 Actis made several landmark investments, demonstrating deep expertise in a range of sectors, creative investment structures, and close relationships with business owners and managers. Highlights include: Alexander Forbes – one of the largest leveraged buyouts in South Africa; Diamond Bank – one of the largest single private equity investments ever made in Nigeria; Fuel Logistics – the buyout of a leading supply chain and logistics services group in South Africa; GOGE – an upstream oil and gas business in Nigeria; Sinai International – a leading marble exporter in Egypt; Mouka – a pioneering buyout in Nigeria with a leading family business; Boynton – Black Economic Empowerment financing for a platinum mining company.
Peter Schmid, Partner responsible for Actis’s African business said:
“This award recognises Actis’s commitment to creating long term value by building world-class, sustainable businesses in Africa. The critical part of this commitment is our investment approach and our people. Our approach is based on deep local knowledge and extensive on-the-ground presence. We don’t just commit our capital; we commit to partnering with companies to help them grow over the long term. Our people draw from a rich vein of investment and sector expertise. I believe that it is this combination which has allowed us to win.”
2007 was also a year in which Actis sold a number of investments where it had realised its investment goal: The Palms shopping mall in Nigeria, sold to its Nigerian partner; El-Rashidi El-Mizan, Egypt’s leading producer of halawa and tahina (two staple food products made from sesame seed); Lenco, a South African plastic packaging company; Platmin, an early-stage platinum group materials exploration company in South Africa; and Flamingo, an integrated horticultural business in cut flowers and fresh vegetables, operating jointly between Kenya and the UK.