Carlyle fund eyes more buyout deals in Africa

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) – Global private equity firm Carlyle Group (CYL.UL: Quote, Profile, Research) plans to open offices in Johannesburg and Lagos and start investing in capital growth ventures and buyouts in the fast-growing region.

Washington D.C.-based Carlyle, which has $16.6 billion of assets under management in emerging markets, said it would begin with investments in the consumer goods, financial services, agriculture, infrastructure and energy sectors.

“The entrance of a global player like Carlyle into sub-Saharan Africa is a testament to the region’s progress and prospects and will attract more capital and talent to the region,” Danie Jordaan, Carlyle’s sub-Saharan Africa co-head, said in a statement.

“We also believe Carlyle’s global network will facilitate the growth of its sub-Saharan Africa investments in the major international markets.”

Helped by a 2002-2008 commodities boom, sub-Saharan Africa has enjoyed nearly a decade of robust growth, accompanied by relative political stability and deepening capital markets.

The International Monetary Fund sees economic growth of 5.5 percent for the region this year, one of the world’s fastest rates.

Carlyle, which has $97.7 billion in assets globally, said it was attracted by Africa’s favorable demographics, its expanding domestic industries and improving politics.

Jordan is a former partner at Johannesburg-based Ethos Private Equity. His co-head is Marlon Chigwende, former managing director and head of private equity Africa for Standard Chartered Bank.

(Reporting by Gugulakhe Lourie; Editing by Ed Cropley)

Carlyle fund eyes more buyout deals in Africa