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IFC CREATES MOROCCAN PRIVATE EQUITY FUND


Jannette Esguerra
Phone: (202) 458-5204
Fax: (202) 974-4384
E-mail: jesguerra@ifc.org


WASHINGTON, D.C., June 28, 2000 – A new US$21 million private equity fund has been created to invest in small and high-growth-sector companies mainly in Morocco and also in Algeria and Tunisia.
The Maghreb Private Equity Fund Limited is designed primarily to help Moroccan companies realize long-term capital gains from equity investments. The fund can also invest up to 30 percent of its capital in Algerian and Tunisian companies.
The Fund will be an active investment partner in investee companies and offer help in staffing, marketing, as well as financial and strategic management services. It aims to establish synergies between the activities of its portfolio companies.
IFC is investing $5 million in the Fund and will take a 17.75 percent stake, representing an equity investment of $17,750 in MaghrebInvest Management, Ltd (MML), the company established to manage the Fund.
Managers of MML will be Tuninvest Finance Group, a leader in private equity fund management in Tunisia; Paris-based Financière Natexis, which is expanding in the Maghreb; and Casablanca-based Upline Securities, which offers brokerage, research and corporate finance activities in Morocco.
The Fund will support viable small and medium-sized businesses by providing much-needed access to equity and will promote skill development and technology know-how to help create profitable companies, said Sami Haddad, IFC Director of the Middle East and North Africa region.
The mission of IFC, part of the World Bank Group, is to promote private sector investment in developing countries, which will reduce poverty and improve people's lives. IFC finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes capital in the international financial markets, and provides technical assistance and advice to governments and businesses.