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Middle East & North Africa

Please find below a sampling of some of the latest EMPEA statistics, programs and content covering information on the MENA region. For a more comprehensive listing, please search "MENA," "Middle East" or "North Africa," in addition to customizable criteria in Advanced Search.

MENA Data Insight (Q1 2014)

Private equity fund managers orchestrated six known liquidity events in MENA in the first quarter of 2014, signaling to investors that a diversity of exits are taking place in a region recently characterized by political challenges. In addition to strategic and share sales, private equity-backed IPOs in Q1 included Gulf Capital-backed Gulf Marine Services’ offering on the London Stock Exchange, which raised almost US$300 million in March, and Emerging Capital Partners (ECP)-backed Societe d’Articles Hygieniques’ January listing on the Tunis Stock Exchange, which returned a reported cash multiple of 2.4x to ECP.  Learn more »


Featured Report

Private Credit Solutions: Mezzanine Financing in Emerging Markets

Bespoke Financing: A Parfect Fit for an Imperfect Market
By Amjad Ahmad, NBK Capital

While scouring the MENA region for private equity investments in 2006, we quickly realized that companies were starved of credit. In some instances, businesses had no bank facilities, while in others the facilities the companies had were inadequate (e.g., short term in nature, carrying excessively high interest rates and/or highlight restrictive covenants. In addition, the local private equtiy industry was developing and increased the need for sophisticated capital structures to finance the growth of portfolio companies. 

Legal & Regulatory

The Way Forward for Private Equity in Egypt

Since the removal of the Morsi-led government from power in July 3, 2013, Egypt has started on a path of istikrar, istismar and istilam—stability, enhancement of entrepreneurship, and safety and security of the state—that should bolster Egypt's economy. In the background of this economic activity, most Egyptians have been focused on the draft Constitution, which was overwhelmingly approved in a two-day vote on January 14 and 15, 2014. The approval of the draft Constitution will set the stage for Egypt to undertake further reforms to create a more favorable environment for private equity and venture capital. Source: Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, 2014. 


MENA Fundraising and Investment

Source: EMPEA
  Fundraising (US$m) Investment (US$m)

Q1 2014























Additional Resources

Marketing Private Funds in the Middle East
In the past, managers promoting private funds in most countries in the Middle East have not found much difficulty navigating local rules. Foreign fund managers typically did not worry too much about local securities laws, often relying on “reverse solicitation” or “passive marketing” practices, with the tacit approval of regulators. Those days may be over. Source: EMPEA Legal & Regulatory Bulletin, Autumn 2012.

EMPEA Professional Development Webcast - The MENA Region: An Overview and Update
This EMPEA Professional Development Webcast examines the effects of the geopolitical turbulence in the MENA region on the PE industry and investors' perceptions. Listen to industry leaders from EMPEA Leadership Circle Member Abraaj Capital discuss how today's headlines may be laying the foundations for tomorrow's great returns. Source: EMPEA Professional Development Webcast, June 2011

Slogan or Salvation: Operational Value Creation in MENA Private Equity
For a third consecutive year, Keystone (the General Manager of GrowthGate) has published a white paper that is the collective work of: (i) Harvard Business School (HBS) faculty members (MBA – Class 2012), (ii) Prof. Josh Lerner of HBS and one of the leading authorities on Private Equity (PE) in the US; and (iii) members of Keystone’s combined investment advisory and portfolio management teams. Source: Keystone, May 2012

Impact Case Study: Jazeera Steel
In 2007, Jazeera Steel was planning a major expansion of its operations into the steel bar market. Kuwait-based fund manager Global Capital Management identified an opportunity to create value by funding Jazeera Steel’s plant expansion through acquiring a majority stake in the company. Over the next several years, Global guided Jazeera Steel through a sharp contraction in the world steel market, significantly reduced borrowing costs and nearly doubled the company’s profits within four years of its acquisition. Source: EMPEA 2012.

EMPEA Insight: North Africa
While it is too soon to speculate about the potential long-term consequences of the unrest unfolding across North Africa, EMPEA’s members are expressing confidence that this chain of events will result in more stable, faster-growing economies that will present private equity players with compelling investment opportunities and more investor-friendly domestic regimes. This report includes analysis and commentary from Abraaj Capital, Citadel Capital, TunInvest-AfricInvest Group and Swicorp. Source: EMPEA 2011.

Impact Assessment of the Recent Events in Tunisia
Expert Commentary by TunInvest-AfricInvest Group: The extraordinary events in Tunisia, which were sparked by a spontaneous youth movement protesting unemployment, social inequities and corruption will undoubtedly have a long-term impact on the investment environment there. TunInvest-AfricInvest Group shares an analysis of the short- and long-term outlook for Tunisia, based on official news, contacts with business community leaders, and the firm's own understanding of the situation on the ground, based on the experiences of its portfolio companies, both former and current. Source: EMPEA 2011.

Private Equity in North Africa: What Every LP Should Know
This EMPEA Professional Development Webcast convenes the region’s private equity insiders to discuss the immediate impact of changes underway, where the region’s private equity industry may be headed, and how anticipated reforms may affect the long-term investment thesis and investor returns. The recent developments that began in Tunisia and reverberated across North Africa and the Middle East have raised the perceived risk profile as well as questions about the challenges and opportunities in the region over the longer term.  Source: EMPEA Professional Development Webcast, February 2011