Cap­i­tal­works cre­ates busi­ness for Africa

Business Day - - COMPANIES - Marc Hasen­fuss

Al­ter­na­tive as­set man­ager Cap­i­tal­works Group, which is in the throes of a buy-out of­fer for Uiten­hage-based poul­try group Sov­er­eign Food, has launched a $300m sub-Sa­ha­ran Africa in­vest­ment com­pany.

Newly formed Africa Cap­i­tal­works would aim at mo­bil­is­ing per­ma­nent eq­uity cap­i­tal in mid-mar­ket com­pa­nies in strate­gi­cally se­lected sec­tors across sub-Sa­hara Africa, ex­clud­ing SA, the group dis­closed on Thurs­day.

Africa Cap­i­tal­works had al­ready se­cured early sup­port and sub­stan­tial in­vest­ment for its $300m fund from CDC, a well-known UK de­vel­op­ment fi­nance in­sti­tu­tion, and the Pub­lic In­vest­ment Cor­po­ra­tion, which man­ages the re­tire­ment sav­ings of South African gov­ern­ment em­ploy­ees, it said in a me­dia state­ment.

Africa Cap­i­tal­works will be led by joint man­ag­ing part­ners Beth Man­del and Nana Sao.

Man­del has been man­ag­ing Cap­i­tal­works Group’s Africa strat­egy since 2007, while Sao, who is the founder of Sao Cap­i­tal, has more than 17 years’ in­vest­ment ex­pe­ri­ence.

Man­del said Africa Cap­i­tal­works had been pur­pose built for sub-Sa­ha­ran Africa to de­ploy cap­i­tal in an ef­fort to se­cure “true part­ner­ship, high im­pact and high re­turns”.

Cap­i­tal­works Group founder Chad Smart said that by hav­ing mul­ti­ple in­vest­ment per­spec­tives through which it was ac­tively search­ing for at­trac­tive trans­ac­tion op­por­tu­ni­ties, Cap­i­tal­works Africa would be able to dif­fer­en­ti­ate it­self from other play­ers in the sub-Sa­ha­ran Africa mar­ket. Cap­i­tal­works would im­merse it­self in ev­ery in­vest­ment, he said.

“In ad­di­tion to hav­ing rep­re­sen­ta­tion on the boards of di­rec­tors and key com­mit­tees of its port­fo­lio com­pa­nies, the team main­tains di­rect, fre­quent con­tact with man­age­ment teams and plays a key role in sig­nif­i­cant strate­gic, fi­nan­cial and com­mer­cial de­ci­sions,” Smart said.

/Robert Tsha­bal­ala.

Hands-on: Chad Smart, founder of Cap­i­tal­works Group.

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