Car­lyle Group agrees to be GCR’s big­gest share­holder

The Star Early Edition - - BUSINESS NEWS - Dasha Afanasieva

THE CAR­LYLE Group has agreed to be­come the largest share­holder in Jo­han­nes­burg-based Global Credit Rat­ings (GCR), the US buy­out fund said yes­ter­day, look­ing to broaden the pan-African rat­ings agency’s ser­vices.

The terms of the deal, which was first re­ported by the Fi­nan­cial Times, were not dis­closed. Car­lyle was set to buy about half of the eq­uity in GCR from its man­age­ment founders and Ger­man de­vel­op­ment fi­nance busi­ness DEG, which would re­main in­vested in the com­pany, Car­lyle said.

GCR serves 400 cus­tomers across 20 coun­tries and is the only rat­ings agency to have a strong pres­ence in mul­ti­ple ge­ogra­phies across Africa.

“The busi­ness plays a crit­i­cal role in deep­en­ing African cap­i­tal mar­kets and we look for­ward to work­ing with man­age­ment to con­tinue to de­velop and broaden the com­pany’s ser­vice of­fer­ings,” Steve Burn-Mur­doch, a vice-pres­i­dent on the Car­lyle Sub-Sa­ha­ran Africa team, said.

Car­lyle raised $698 mil­lion (R9.48 billion) for its Africa buy­out fund in 2014, ex­ceed­ing its $500m tar­get.

In Novem­ber, Car­lyle, which has $169bn of as­sets un­der man­age­ment, agreed to buy a ma­jor­ity share of CMC Net­works, a pan-African telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions busi­ness.

In Septem­ber, it agreed to buy a ma­jor­ity share of Am­rod, a sup­plier of pro­mo­tional prod­ucts and cloth­ing in South Africa and neigh­bour­ing coun­tries.

Car­lyle is al­ready in­vested in the sec­tor, hav­ing part­nered with pri­vate eq­uity fund War­burg Pin­cus and a con­sor­tium of Canadian-based in­di­vid­ual in­vestors to ac­quire the world’s fourth largest global credit rat­ings agency DBRS in 2015.

Founded more than two decades ago as the African arm of the New York Stock Ex­change-listed Duff & Phelps, GCR ex­panded through ac­qui­si­tions, al­liances and or­ganic growth. – Reuters

400 Num­ber of GCR cus­tomers across 20 coun­tries

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