Investor Relations & Communications 2021

This week Private Equity Wire caught up with Huda al Lawati, partner at Dubai-based Gateway Partners for an interesting Zoom conversation. Gateway Partners is a private equity manager investing in Africa, Middle East, South and South East Asia, with offices in Singapore and Dubai.

Originally from Oman, al Lawati has earned degrees in both Business Economics and Neuroscience from US-based Brown University. Having joined Saudi-listed consumer conglomerate Savola as chief investment officer in 2015, she was responsible for portfolio management, M&A, investor relations and strategy there.

The private equity expert shared her views on the outlook for the private equity sector, digitalisation and emerging markets, and recent developments she is seeing within the intersection of the private equity and EM space right now.

In other news and further north, Verdane – a growth equity investment firm and one of Northern Europe’s most active specialist e-commerce investors – sold half of its majority investment in Desenio, a global wall art online retailer, through a private placement followed by a listing of the company’s shares on the NASDAQ First North Growth Market.

The offering valued the company at SEK11 billion. Verdane will retain half of its shareholding in Desenio, which amounted to 60 per cent prior to the private placement, and remain the company’s largest shareholder.

The growth in SPACs, which has seen intense investor interest in the past year, continues. In an article for PEW by Brenon Daly, research director at 451 Research, which is part of S&P Global Market Intelligence, Daly outlines how this month marked the eighth consecutive month of acquisition spending that’s roughly twice the level of a typical month.

For the first time in the recent record run, a new buyer is leading the market higher: SPACs, or special-purpose acquisition companies, however. Boosted by an unprecedented shopping spree by blank-cheque companies, the tech M&A market extended its stunning rebound from last spring’s Covid-19 collapse. Acquirers spent USD87 billion on tech and telecom deals around the globe in February, according to 451 Research’s M&A KnowledgeBase, writes Daly.

Karin Wasteson
Editor, Private Equity Wire



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