Moroccan deals featured largely in last week's private capital news from Africa. There were four deals in the North African country, two of which were quite possibly related, SPE Capital Partners announced the third deal for its first fund since the fund manager was spun out of Swicorp. SPE AIF I is buying an undisclosed stake in H&S Invest, an investment platform owned by the Belkhayat family.
SPE Capital's investment coincides with the news that Amethis's exit from Dislog, H&S Invest's biggest holding, has now completed. The sale was originally announced in March, giving the Paris-based private equity firm its full exit from the distribution company which it first backed in 2014.
The other two deals in Morocco last week were venture capital deals. In the first, MITC Capital, managers of the Maroc Numeric Fund, has sold its stake in Ma-Navette, a ride-hailing startup it backed in 2015. The buyer of the stake, Glen Invest is also providing a capital increase to support the firm's expansion plans for the broader MENA region.
SEAF Morocco Capital Partners is backing SOS Credit, a startup offering mortgage brokerage services in Morocco. The firm will use the fresh funds to support and accelerate its growth in its domestic market. In the 2017 to 2018 period the company reported that it had achieved high growth rates, a trend it hopes to continue with the investment from SEAF.
Staying in the financial services sector, TLG Capital is backing Platcorp Holdings through its Credit Opportunites Fund. Originally a provider of financial services products to civil servants in East Africa, the firm has now diversified its offering to target a larger group of non-government employed clients.
Phatisa is merging Goldtree, a palm oil milling business in Sierra Leone, with Natural Habits Europe Africa's milling and plantation assets in the same country. The deal, whose value remains undisclosed, gives Phatisa an almost 50% stake in the combined business, which goes under the name of Goldtree Holdings. Finnfund will hold 22.51% of the merged business while Natural Habitats Europe Africa will hold a 27.5% stake.
Fresh from its official launch two weeks ago, Gridworks, a CDC-capitalized electricity investment platform has announced its first investment. The London-based organization is backing Mettle Solar Investments with equity. Cape Town-based Mettle, which already operates 29 projects on the continent, will use the fresh capital to expand its services into some additional countries, including Angola, Mozambique, Tanzania, Nigeria, and Madagascar.
Climate Fund Managers has announced the final close for two investment cycle-related fund units that make up Climate Investor One, their inaugural investment facility focused on renewable energy opportunities in emerging markets. Between them, the two funds now have $850 million to deploy, of which $50 million will be used for development and technical assistance initiatives. The rest will be used for construction projects.
The fund will back renewable energy projects, focusing primarily on solar, wind and run-of-river hydro developments. In addition to Africa, which 40% of the fund will reportedly be allocated to, Asia and Latin America will also be the source of potential investments. As well as risk-adjusted returns for its investors, the fund will seek to maximize impact returns for the communities in which its investments operate.
That's it for this week. As always, you can review these and other stories by clicking through to this week's preview edition of the newsletter.
Allan Cunningham is a senior media executive who has spent the last 15 years of his career working for some of the world’s most respected M&A and Private Equity media companies including Dow Jones’s publications Private Equity Analyst and VentureWire and most recently, The Deal. He has built a number of successful digital and event content businesses, both subscription and sponsor-supported, delivering information and content-marketing services to clients in the M&A and broader deal ecosystem. He recently struck out on his own and launched Rowayton Press, a multi-platform media company focused on the private capital opportunities in emerging and frontier markets. Mr. Cunningham holds a Bachelors degree from Liverpool John Moores University in the UK.