Dealmakers dialed back their activity levels in Africa last week compared to the week before. We lead with the news that Helios Investment Partners and the Egyptian-American Enterprise Fund have joined forces to take control of Misr Hytech, one of the Middle East and Africa's largest seed producers. Terms of the deal were hard to come by, but the two investment firms now own 96.7% of the company between them.
The continent's fintech sector continues to attract investor interest. Velocity Capital, a Netherlands-based private equity firm which already counts two African payments businesses, Yoco and Cellulant, among its portfolio of companies has launched a new fund for the sector. While the FinTech Ventures Fund has a global mandate, some of Africa's startups in the sector are sure to be on their target list.
IFC is taking an equity stake in a West African mineral sands mining operator. The DFI is investing in Sierra Rutile, a subsidiary of ASX-listed Iluka Resources. The two-stage investment will eventually give the IFC a 10% stake in the business. The first stage of the investment is expected to take place within the month, with the balance being invested once Iluka approves the construction of early works for the Sembehum project, a mine whose deposits account for over 70% of Sierra Rutile’s remaining ore reserves.
Globaleq's deal to acquire some of Brookfield Asset Management's South African renewable energy holdings has now closed. The deal, which was originally agreed in August last year, adds four renewable energy generation plants to Globaleq’s platform. The prices paid for the assets remain undisclosed.
Heat Exchange Products, a water management business in which Eos Capital acquired a majority stake in February last year, is making a deal of its own. The Namibian company is buying Valco Pipes, a bulk water and reticulation pipe supply business in a move backed by Eos, which has ambitious plans for the country's water sector.
Finally, a couple of new appointments of interest to professionals working in the continent's private capital markets were announced this week. In the first, Africa Merchant Capital has recruited a General Manager for its burgeoning trade finance unit. Kenton Hartwell joins the London-based merchant banking boutique’s AMC Trade Finance from Crown Agents Bank, where he’d been a Vice President of Trade Finance.
And Nicolas Bonnefoy is joining law firm McCarthy Denning’s 5-partner energy team. He brings extensive experience acting for oil and gas companies as well as mining companies in Africa, ranging from securing the award of exploration and production rights through to assisting oil and gas companies in the context of M&A transactions.
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.