Last week in brief...Another strong exit features in the deal news from Africa this week. And, once again, it was for a secondary deal.This time the beneficiary is Centum Investments, who sold its remaining stake in Platinum Credit. The sale gives the Kenyan investment holding company a full exit from the financial services business, which operates in Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania, providing emergency loans to its customers. It first backed the company in December 2012, since when its earned a 31% holding period internal rate of return on investment according to Centum CEO, James Mworia.
That wasn't Centum's only exit for the week, either. It announced that it has agreed to sell its 73.35% stake in GenAfrica Asset Managers, one of the largest pension fund managers in Kenya and Uganda, to Kuramo Capital. GenAfrica has been operating in the Kenyan capital markets for the past 22 years and has grown steadily over time to manage approximately KShs 157 billion (or $1.6 billion at current exchange rates) in assets as of March 2017.
Knife Capital is making what it describes as "a multi-million dollar" investment in DataProphet, a machine learning startup based in Cape Town. The precise amount of capital being invested and valuation details remain undisclosed, however. The capital has been earmarked to help accelerate DataProphet's ongoing global expansion as well as give its innovation capabilities a boost. The firm's key clients and revenue drivers are largely international and the company enjoys a reputation of competing at the highest level, outperforming blue-chip corporations on projects in many instances.
One of the deals announced last week in fact took place a year ago when AFIG Funds backed Tecnicil Indústria, a beverage company in Cape Verde. The deal was announced to coincide with the opening of Tecnicil's production facility for fruit juices and dairy products last week, the capital costs of which were supported by AFIG's investment last year. When it happened, the transaction was the first for AFIG Fund II, the private equity fund manager's sophomore fund which is in market aiming to raise $250 million to invest in businesses that exhibit the potential to become regional "blue chips" in West, Central and East Africa. While the precise terms of the transaction were not disclosed, AFIG Fund II's stated investment ticket sizes typically range between $5 million and $20 million.
Goodwell Investments announced it is making a follow-on investment in Musoni, a banking software provider to microfinance institutions. The deal is the second for the Dutch impact investment firm in this niche this month, following its transaction for Oradian, a business that provides microfinance institutions with a cloud-based banking platform. Goodwell first backed Netherlands-headquartered Musoni in December 2015, whose client base today numbers some 90 microfinance institutions in 10 countries in Africa and a further 3 in Asia.
Fundraising news was almost non-existent last week. The only item was the African Development Bank's Board approval of a multi-million dollar loan to support the establishment of the Rwanda Innovation Fund. The fund, whose main objective will be to promote innovation and entrepreneurship in Rwanda and the broader East African Community, aims to ultimately mobilize $100 million in direct commitments from the Rwandan Government and private investors.
And finally, there were a couple of pieces of news from ither outlets that we thought you'd find interesting. According to Reuters, Naspers is thinking of trimming its holding in Tencent by 2%. If it goes ahead, it could raise as much as $11 billion, which it will look to reinvest in its e-commerce unit. And sources tell Bloomberg that Standard Chartered has kicked off the sales process for its private equity unit. Information on the unit, which manages some $3.5 billion in assets, is apparently being sent to interested parties in the next few weeks.
As always, you can review these and other stories by clicking through to this week’s preview issue of Africa Capital Digest.
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.