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Wednesday, 22 March 2017

Dutch PE firm DOB Equity plans to double its Kenyan portfolio

Dutch PE firm DOB Equity targets to double its Kenyan portfolio this year, signalling an aggressive round of acquisitions involving local mid-sized firms. The family-owned fund says it is scouting for investment opportunities in Kenya where it already has stakes in eight ventures across sectors such as retail, agribusiness, education, and energy. “DOB Equity is geared to continue its growth and double its investments in impactful, innovative and scalable companies year-on-year,” Brigit van Dijk – van de Reijt, chief executive at DOB Equity, told the Business Daily. “Over the past few years, we have significantly increased our impact in the region by supporting the growth of our companies and investing in a number of strong, solid opportunities.” Ms van de Reijt declined to reveal the value of total investments planned. Last year, DOB Equity made three investments in Kenya. It bought stakes in grocery supplier Twiga Foods, milk processor Countryside Dairy and solar micro grid company PowerGen. DOB’s portfolio includes online retailer Copia, pay-as-you-go solar provider M-Kopa, solar lighting and appliances firm Barefoot Power, low-cost chain of schools Bridge International Academies and Lake Victoria ferry operator Globology Ltd. Ms van de Reijt said the fund’s focus on Kenya is based on the fact that Nairobi is a hub for innovative business concepts. The venture capital firm has offices in Nairobi, Dar and Veessen, the Netherlands. DOB said it also targets “rolling out the business models across the region, including in Uganda and Tanzania,” seeking to replicate the business models of its enterprises such as M-Kopa, Bridge, and PowerGen. The East Africa-focused fund typically invests between €250,000 (Sh27.25 million) and €2 million (Sh218 million) in mid-sized firms for a minority stake ranging from 25 per cent to 49 per cent. Targeted sectors are agribusiness, retail, water management, logistics, education, mobile technology-enabled ventures and renewable energy. Kenya’s PE and VC scene has been very active in the recent past, as funds make acquisitions and cash in on exits. TA Associates, a US-based global PE firm, last week acquired a minority stake in Interswitch, the payments firm which runs Kenswitch.

Source: www.businessdailyafrica.com