Last week in brief...NBK Capital Partners made their tenth education sector deal last week, this time in Egypt. The MENA-focused private equity investor announced that it is backing an acquisition by Kaumeya Language Schools, one of its Egyptian portfolio companies. The Alexandria-based businessis buying all the equity in King Integrated American Schools, a private school provider located in the city's rapidly growing King Mariout district.

Meanwhile in West Africa, Wendel Group is exiting its stake in PlaYce, a shopping mall developer and operator formerly known as SGI Africa which the private equity firm first backed in 2016. The move is the result of Wendel's broader strategy to refocus its investment strategy towards larger assets. Wendel is selling its 40% stake back to CFAO Group, the company which originally launched the business in 2015,

Staying in West Africa, Nigerian fintech company TeamApt has successfully completed raising its Series A round, which was led by Quantum Capital Partners. The round is the first institutional round for the Lagos-based digital solutions and payment infrastructure provider, which has been bootstrapped since its founding in 2015.

The fresh capital will be used to fuel the company's planned expansion into additonal markets as well as invest in additional product development, make some new hires and add enhancements to its internal operational capabilities.

In South Africa, Sasfin has announced an investment in Payabill, a rapidly growing fintech lender. The link with Sasfin will allow Payabill to increase the size of the loans it makes to SMEs.

Payabill, which was launched by Eli Michal in 2017, provides small businesses with working capital and trade finance solutions. The company settles suppliers directly for its clients while allowing them the flexibility to select their own extended payment terms.

There was only one item of fundraising news last week. The $100 million SA SME Fund is investing R100 million (or approximately $7 million) in Spartan SME Finance's latest fund, a planned $42 million generalist debt fund which will typically make investments between $35,000 and $1 million in size.

SA SME's anchor commitment facilitates an additional $35 million of institutional funding from Spartan's current funders as wel as new local and international institutions. About half of the capital committed by the SA SME Fund, which is immediately available to Spartan to boost its SME lending activities, will be invested in black African-led SMEs.

And finally, David Bohigian has assumed the role of Acting President & CEO of OPIC, the US government's development finance institution. He takes over from Ray Washburne, President Trump's appointment to lead the agency, who is returning to work in the private sector.

He starts in the role at a critical time for the agency, which is going to be transformed in the coming months following the passage of the Better Utilization of Investments Leading to Development or BUILD Act into law last year. Having joined OPIC in 2017, Bohigian played a critical role in advancing the legislation which will broaden and modernise the scope of the USA's development initiatives under the umbrealla of the renamed United States Development Finance Corporation.

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

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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