JOHANNESBURG, April 15 Carlyle Group LP
has closed it first sub-Saharan African fund after raising $698
million, the U.S. private equity firm said on Tuesday, exceeding
its initial target by 40 percent.
It is the largest first-time private equity fund ever in
sub-Saharan Africa, representing strong interest from global
investors for the fast-growing region, Carlyle's co-head for the
region, Marlon Chigwende, told Reuters.
Apart from the African Development Bank, which has committed
$50 million, many of the other investors are new to Africa,
Chigwende said. "Geographically, investors are broadly spread
around the globe," he said.
Investors are increasingly looking to Africa, given its
rising wealth and consumer spending.
Management consultancy McKinsey estimates that African
consumer spending will be $1.4 trillion by 2020 - nearly
doubling from $860 billion in 2008 - and forecasts a more than
doubling of the working age population to 1.1 billion people by
But that growth is hard to tap for traditional equity
investors, given that many African capital markets are still
underdeveloped and illiquid.
Carlyle has already invested in Tanzania-based supply chain
manager Export Trading Group and Mozambique-based J&J Africa, a
Chigwende said Carlyle could announce a "couple more" deals
in Africa in the coming quarters.
(Reporting by David Dolan; Editing by Janet Lawrence)