Last week in brief…The Abraaj Group was involved in two of the most notable private equity stories coming out of Africa last week. On Monday, they announced that they had fully exited their investment in pan-African insurer UAP Holdings by completing the sale of a 13.6% stake to Old Mutual. On Tuesday it was announced that Abraaj had agreed to buy a majority stake in Nigerian mattress manufacturer Mouka Ltd., giving fellow emerging markets private equity firm Actis a full exit in the process. While no details of the terms for either deal were disclosed, you may remember that Bloomberg reported in January that Old Mutual was paying $155 million in cash for 37.3% of UAP.

Meanwhile, adding to its portfolio of East African investments, Fanisi Capital is spending $6 million to take a significant minority position in Arusha-based Kijenge Animal Products. This latest deal is the eighth transaction for the $50 million Kenya-based fund. And the IFC is backing Alcazar Energy, an independent renewable energy power developer and producer that was formed in early 2014, with $25 million in equity to help it develop wind and solar plants in the MENA region.

Staying with the renewable energy sector, Greenstone Equity Partners, one of the Middle East's largest fund placement firms, is working with TIMU Energy Holdings, the joint venture collaboration between infrastructure investor Harith General Partners and renewable energy investment firm Jones Pohl, to raise capital from GCC investors for clean energy and natural gas power projects on the continent. The fund is seeking between $20 million and $25 million for early stage investments, and currently has 7 potential projects in 5 African countries in its pipeline.

In other fundraising news, the IFC featured in the largest fundraising announcement of the week as it was joined by the Arab Fund for Social and Economic Development, the Arab Investment Company and the Arab Petroleum Investment Corporation in committing to invest a total of $125 million in the IFC's MENA Fund. The fund will focus primarily providing private companies in the infrastructure, financial services and manufacturing sectors with growth equity capital in a bid to spur employment and economic development in the region.

Cupric Canyon Partners announced that it plans to spend $200 million to bring a new copper-silver mine in Botswana into production. In mid-June, the Barclays Capital-backed private equity firm had bid $35 million to acquire Discovery Copper Botswana out of liquidation, whose mothballed Boseto mining assets are located approximately 30 kms away from the site of the new mine. It's anticipated that once it is up and running, the mine will produce 50,000 tonnes of copper and 1.8 million ounces of silver annually, once it starts shipping to the market in 2018.

And finally, an interesting interview from CNBC Africa discussing the challenges and opportunities of investing pension fund assets in infrastructure projects with Opuiyo Oforiokuma, the CEO of ARM-Harith's Infrastructure Investments and Niyi Falase, the Managing Director of Nigerian pension fund administrator CrusaderSterling Pensions.

Allan Cunningham

Allan Cunningham

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.

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