Carlyle Group Buys Diamond Bank Stake for Nigerian Expansion

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Carlyle (CG) Group LP invested $147 million in Lagos-based Diamond Bank Plc (DIAMONDB) as it seeks to expand in Africa’s largest economy.

Carlyle, the world’s second-largest manager of investment alternatives to stocks and bonds, bought the stake through its sub-Saharan Africa Fund as the Nigerian lender held a rights offer, Diamond Bank said today in an e-mailed statement.

The investment, the first by Carlyle in Africa’s biggest oil producer, will give it a stake of about 18 percent in Diamond Bank if the transaction is approved by regulators, Catherine Armstrong, a spokeswoman for the Washington-based firm, said in an e-mailed response to questions.

The Carlyle fund has invested almost $300 million in sub-Saharan countries including Mozambique, Zambia, Tanzania and the Democratic Republic of the Congo since 2011, Diamond Bank said. The bank sold shares in August as it sought to raise 50.4 billion naira ($284 million) for investment in infrastructure, branch expansion and lending.

Diamond Bank dropped 0.2 percent to 5.49 naira by the close in Lagos, valuing the lender at 79.5 billion naira. The stock has declined 21 percent this year compared with the 18 percent retreat by the Nigerian Stock Exchange All-Share Index.

Carlyle Group has $203 billion of assets under management, Diamond Bank said. New York-based Blackstone Group LP is the largest alternative-asset manager. Source: Bloomberg

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