BluePeak Private Capital – an alternative investment firm with a strong focus on Africa – has raised capital of more than USD100 million for the initial closing of its flagship private credit and mezzanine fund, BluePeak Private Capital Fund SCSp (the Fund).
The Fund is targetting a final close of USD200 million, with a hard cap of USD250 million.
Walid Cherif, co-founder and Managing Director of BluePeak Private Capital, says: “I am particularly delighted and pleased to have reached this important milestone for BluePeak. It’s quite an achievement for a firm that was launched less than 2 years ago. The quality of investors who supported us and led the first close of this flagship fund is a testament to the strong experience and operational setup of BluePeak and its team.”
The Fund’s initial closing is backed by leading African investors including CDC Group, the UK’s development finance institution and impact investor; the European Investment Bank, the European Union’s bank, DFC, the US Development Finance Corporation, FMO, the Dutch entrepreneurial development bank and the “Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations” CDC Tunisia. The Fund will provide bespoke financing solutions to small and mid-market companies and private equity sponsors operating in Africa that generate revenues between USD10 million and USD80 million and operate in growth sectors that are non-cyclical in nature, have strong management teams and a good track record of financial performance. As well as a strong focus on the ESG in every investment, BluePeak will also proactively identify areas where positive impacts can be achieved.
Adam Hadidi, co-founder and Managing Director of BluePeak Private Capital, adds: “SMEs in Africa are still facing financing challenges despite their critical role in the growth and stability of African economies. The Covid-19 crisis made the needs more substantial and the opportunity to support great businesses undeniable. Asset-light companies which operate in attractive sectors still find it difficult to obtain financing from the traditional credit markets, even when they have a good track record of financial performance and numerous opportunities for growth. BluePeak was founded to fill this market gap and provide growth capital through a variety of bespoke debt instruments, including mezzanine finance, preferred equity, convertibles and senior debt for companies operating in Africa and the Levant region.”
Stephen Priestley, Managing Director, Head of Financial Services, at CDC Group, says: “Our landmark commitment to BluePeak provides a new opportunity to address the credit shortage for businesses across Africa, in the midst of the pandemic. CDC is pleased that our anchor role in BluePeak’s inaugural fund, combined with partnership with fellow DFIs, will provide necessary growth capital to mid-sized companies across key markets in Africa – offering critical support that will facilitate increased job growth, stimulate productivity and enhance economic rebuild on the continent.”
“Cooperation between private and public investors to accelerate high-impact private sector investment across Africa is crucial to enable African entrepreneurs to harness new opportunities and tackle the exceptional health, social and economic challenges posed by Covid-19. The European Investment Bank is pleased to join forces with BluePeak Private Capital and provide USD30 million for their innovative new fund that will address the growth capital investment gap holding back expansion of African business and job creation. Our first partnership with BluePeak Private Capital builds on the EIB’s 55 year track record of supporting private and public investment across the continent and record EIB engagement in Africa last year, as part of Team Europe’s rapid health and economic resilience response to the pandemic,” says Thomas Östros, European Investment Bank Vice President.
Alison Klein, Manager Private Equity, FMO, says: “We are proud to support this high-quality team in raising their first fund under the BluePeak banner. Mezzanine finance has an important role to play in closing the funding gap experienced by growth companies in Africa, which has been exacerbated by the Covid pandemic. This partnership with BluePeak is aligned with our mission of empowering entrepreneurs to build a better world.”
Nejia Gharbi, Acting Managing Director, Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations (CDC Tunisia), says: “As a long-term impact investor, CDC Tunisia seeks, through its investments, to support all forms of financing to SMEs. BluePeak’s strategy fits well with this logic by providing the capital needed by SMEs and also by the Tunisian economy. By its commitment to the Fund, CDC Tunisia believes that a new perspective is opening up to SMEs which deserve all the support available.“
The Fund is expected to make investments of USD10 million to USD25 million each throughout its 10-year life.