Investors & Partners launches €80 million fund for African SMEs

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Investors & Partners (I&P), which celebrated its fifteenth anniversary on December 6th, is launching a new fund: I&P Afrique entrepreneurs 2 (IPAE 2). With 50.3 million euros after its first round of financing, with the ambition to reach 80 million euros in the long term, this fund will aim to invest in equity and quasi-funds in minority “in African companies, developed by Africans and operating in Africa,” explained Jean-Michel Severino, president of the group I&P, at the press conference launching the new fund.

30 to 40 companies, including a fifth to a quarter of start-ups, according to Jean-Michel Severino, established “in fifteen countries of” Middle Africa “, from Senegal to Madagascar” (Burkina Faso, Ghana, Ivory Coast , Cameroon …), will be financed by IPAE 2 over the next five years, with amounts ranging from 300,000 to 3 million euros per company.

Agribusiness and overrepresented services
The vehicle is meant to be a generalist. “We are open to all sectors, but like the African economies, agribusiness and services were overrepresented in our first fund dedicated to SMEs, and the manufacturing sector a little less present,” said Jean-Michel Severino – IPAE 1, launched in 2012 , has invested 54 million euros in 29 companies. “This time, I will not be surprised to see a little more technology companies and a little less urban microfinance,” says the president of I&P.

IPAE2 is 45% financed by public investors (Proparco, the European Investment Bank …), 38% by private companies, including the French insurance group Axa, and 17% by foundations, offices wealth management and private investors.

“We are very proud to be able to attract so much private investment,” said Jean-Michel Severino, adding that while the objective “is of course that every company financed is the most profitable possible”, the ambition of I & P is that investors reach a net profitability of 8 to 9% at the time of their withdrawal.

“For IPAE 1, the companies we have supported are at various levels of maturity and our activities are not yet closed, but it seems we are in line with these objectives,” he says. Source: Jeune Afrique

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