advertisement

Companies

Paris-based Amethis eyes Sh36bn to invest in Africa

Ramco Group board member Hasit Patel (left) during a past function in Nairobi. Amethis Finance owns 30 per cent of the firm  FILE PHOTO |  SALATON NJAU | NMG
Ramco Group board member Hasit Patel (left) during a past function in Nairobi. Amethis Finance owns 30 per cent of the firm FILE PHOTO | SALATON NJAU | NMG 

Amethis Finance, a Paris-based company focused on investing in debt and equity in Africa, is seeking to raise Sh36 billion for investment in 11 countries including Kenya.

Amethis Fund II is a 10-year closed-end generalist private equity fund targeting mid-market companies in financial institutions, fast-moving consumer goods, healthcare, agribusiness, education, IT and telecommunications.

The International Finance Corporation (IFC), the World Bank’s private lending arm, is proposing to inject Sh1.8 billion in equity investment into the fund, its disclosures indicate.

Past investments

Amethis has in the past years invested in Chase Bank, Ramco Group and Kenafric Industries.

“The fund has a total committed capital target size of €300 million, of which IFC’s proposed investment is up to €15 million in equity, not to exceed 20 per cent of total committed capital,” IFC notes.

“The growth of the fund’s portfolio companies is expected to result in strong job creation. The fund will invest in companies that focus on the lower-income emerging consumers.”

Other than Kenya, the IFC-backed fund will invest in Côte d’Ivoire, Nigeria, Cameroon, Ghana, Zambia, Tanzania, Mozambique, Ethiopia, Morocco and Mauritius.

Tier one status

Amethis in 2013 injected Sh1 billion ($10.5 million) into Chase Bank, as the lender — which is now in receivership — sought to use a mix of debt and equity to propel it to tier one status and expand regionally.

A year later, the private equity fund took a 30-per cent stake in a subsidiary of Ramco Group for an undisclosed amount of money.

Amethis acquired the stake in Ramco Plexus, which is made up of nine companies with interests in industries such as print and packaging, hardware, stationery and office supplies and ICT consulting.

Ramco Group, a family-owned business with annual turnover of more than Sh23 billion, is headquartered in Nairobi and has a presence in Uganda, Tanzania and Rwanda.

advertisement