Private Equity in Africa

Date: 18 Oct 2017
Location: London


Rapid urbanisation, an emerging middle class with increased purchasing power, and growing private capital markets are among the top qualities that make investment across the African continent attractive. Yet, the interplay among the varied economies—each situated within unique geopolitical environments—has not made investment as straightforward.

The FT and EMPEA are once again hosting the Private Equity in Africa Summit to paint a more nuanced portrait of investment throughout the continent at a critical time when there are increased signs of technological change and innovation in Sub-Saharan Africa. The number of venture capital deals, for example, have steadily climbed and they now represent 18% of total number of deals for the first quarter of 2017 (EMPEA). Following a decline in fundraising after two record years and the search for new markets and exit opportunities, find out what’s next for private capital opportunities in Africa.

Institutional investors, including global and local pension funds, sovereign wealth funds, foundations and development finance institutions, will examine the opportunities for long-term growth and what is needed to go from exploring these opportunities to making substantial fund commitments.

Join key global and local investors to discuss how international developments and regional structural changes are impacting African markets.



Registration and Networking


Opening Remarks from Financial Times & EMPEA Co-Chairs

Jonathan Wheatley, Deputy Emerging Markets Editor, Financial Times

André Roux,Senior Advisor, EMPEA and Founding Partner, Ethos Private Equity


Opening Keynote Interview: Africa on the Move

The emerging trends in Africa and the opportunities that the provide for private equity investors

Patrick Njoroge, Governor, Central Bank of Kenya


Keynote Panel Discussion: Africa in a Global Context: Will it Survive or Thrive?

How can private capital accelerate progress toward Sustainable Development Goals?

What are the implications for the African continent within this challenging geopolitical time as related to a protectionist US administration, post Brexit Britain and structural shocks to the composition of the EU?

Assessing the geopolitical risks of investing in certain African economies and implications for PE funds and investors

Will investors remain at the mercy of volatile commodity prices?

As East Africa breaks away, what does it mean for pan African funds?

Will a challenging pan-African scenario lift the ‘resource curse’ – will more natural prices enforce sustainable development?

How is Africa comparing to other emerging markets in attractiveness for PE investment?

Africa is no longer the exclusive domain of Africa-focussed GPs but has received attention from global players as well – how does investment in Africa fit within their portfolio? What opportunities are they finding on the continent that are not found elsewhere?

Currency fluctuation – what’s next?


David Cowan, Africa Economist, Citi


John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times


Plenary Discussion: Building Value Add Capabilities For Sustained Outperformance

How can private equity fund managers best work in partnership with portfolio companies to find ways increase turnover growth, expand earnings and create jobs?

Where across the value chain is there the greate4st opportunity for optimal active management: origination networks, deal execution, structuring, fundraising, administration and/or portfolio company support?

How essential is strong leadership, both at the portfolio company and fund manager level, to successful value creation?

How can fund managers consider currency exposure and find natural hedging strategies?


Jonathan Wheatley, Deputy Emerging Markets Editor, Financial Times


Networking and Refreshment Break


LP Panel Discussion: Who is Investing and What is Driving Their Decisions?

Is investment in certain areas of Africa a good proposal for risk and return for LPs?

Managing the challenges of underperforming funds

How much of an LP’s portfolio is directed to investments in Africa? Can or should this be scaled up?

What impediments do institutional investors see? Can these challenges actively overcome or is it just a matter of time?

How can GPs align themselves with the preferences and requirements of local LPs?


Lauren Cochran, Director of Private Investments, Blue Haven Initiative

Kevin Njiraini, Chief Investment Officer, International Finance Corporation

Richard Rincón, Emerging Markets Investment Office, UTIMCO and Member, EMPEA Limited Partners Council


Javier Espinoza, Private Capital Correspondent, Financial Times


Panel Discussion: Fundraising in a Changeable Market

What has been the knock on effect from the challenging fundraising circumstances of 2016?

Exploring the fund raising challenges in different regions

Which funds are successfully fundraising following the recent economic turbulence?

How can GPs differentiate themselves and think creatively about fundraising to face the difficult environment?

Emerging trends among LPs - what are their preferences and requirements in terms of African PE funds?

How will LPs increasing preferences toward capital consolidation and forming fewer GP relationships affect fundraising for emerging fund managers?

Which sectors and areas are proving more popular with LPs and why?


Paul Boynton, CEO, Old Mutual Alternative Investments

Dan Schoneveld, Principal, Hamilton Lane

Murray Grant, Managing Director, Intermediate Equity, CDC Group plc


Elaine Moore, Lex writer, Financial Times


Panel Discussion: Engaging the Local Market

According to EMPEA’s report, “Unlocking Africa’s Potential,” aggregate pension funds across the continent could invest approximately $29 billion (considering restrictions). How can we improve on moving shares of this capital into private equity?

What is the perception of local investors to investing in the continent?

  • Are they truly less sensitive to certain risks?
  • Are there enough sophisticated local investors to drive demand? How do we look toward the future to train local investors?

As the drive to get local funds and LPs to invest in Africa intensifies, what will be the impact for the African Market in terms of competitiveness and opportunities?

How can current restrictive regulations for the illiquid investment market evolve to encourage and promote local investment?


Kofi Fynn, Managing Director, Petra Trust Company

Sateesh Kamath, Chief Financial Officer, Safaricom

Michiel Timmerman, Managing Partner, Mbuyu Capital Partners


John Aglionby, East Africa Correspondent, Financial Times




Plenary Discussion: What is Needed for an Enabling Exit Environment?

According to AVCA, exits via initial public offerings or stock sales on public markets are not yet material but are a viable exit option for quality businesses and over 10% of all exits recorded were executed via this method. How should fund managers best take

advantage of this exit path?

What should fund managers be doing to improve their chances of successful and timely exits?

The IPO market in Africa, have recent initiatives been successful in improving perception?

Regional vs international exchanges

Defying the pressure on exits, case study examples of successful exits in 2016/2017


Adrienne Klasa, Editor, This is Africa


Plenary Panel: What Are the Optimal Strategies to Access Africa’s Private Capital Opportunity Set?

Four private equity funds will discuss various investment strategies on the Continent and where they see the evolution of the industry.

Pan-Africa vs. regional focus?

What regions or countries are most exciting at the moment and how to best address the challenges inherent to existing and potential markets?

What are the benefits of sector specification? Which sectors offer the most promising investment opportunities?

Do LPs tend to prefer one strategy over another?


Elaine Moore, Lex writer, Financial Times


Networking and Refreshment Break


Breakout Sessions

Breakout session A: Fund Structuring - what are the Options?

How do we adapt the traditional PE model for different African economies?

  • Can the same timeframe work in Africa?
  • Africa’s growth story is a long-term one – can fixed-life PE fund model capture the upside/opportunity?

The emergence of permanent capital vehicles – what are the advantages and disadvantages?

The role of DFIs in fund structurin?

How can you effectively structure the fund and portfolio company returns to mitigate currency risk?


Thiha Tun, Partner, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP (confirmed)

Mark Kenderdine-Davies, General Counsel and Company Secretary, CDC Group, plc (confirmed)


Jonathan Wheatley, Deputy Emerging Markets Editor, Financial Times (confirmed)

Breakout Session B: Impact Investing, SDGs and African Union Agenda 2063 – How Can Private Capital Contribute to the Achievement of Africa’s Transformational Development Goals?


The Opportunity Showcase:

A panel of LPs will review a panel of GP presentations focused on a specific sector, to deliver a candid (off-the-record) discussion on the factors that will have the greatest influence on LP investment decisions

Sector focus of funds to include:

  1. VC and FinTech
  2. Energy & Infrastructure
  3. Healthcare
  4. Education
  5. Agriculture

LP Judges Panel:

Per Wimmer, CEO, Wimmer Family Office

Daniel Bendavid, CEO, Cogepa SA


Keynote Dialogue: How Can Sustainable and Resilient Infrastructure Pave the Way for the Successful Implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals on the Continent?

Alain Ebobissé, Chief Executive Officer, Africa50

Interviewer: AubreyHruby, Partner, Baylis Emerging Markets Fund and Co-Founder, Africa Expert Network (AXN)


Closing Remarks

Jonathan Wheatley, Deputy Emerging Markets Editor, Financial Times

André Roux,Senior Advisor, EMPEA and Founding Partner, Ethos Private Equity

For more information, please click Here.

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