Africa-focused PE firm managing funds totalling over $3 billion, Helios Investment Partners has today announced plans to sale off a 12.223% in Equity Group Holdings Ltd to Norfund and NorFinance AS, a JV between Norfund and Norwegian private investors.
In 2007, Helios acquired a 24.45 per cent stake in Equity Bank valued at more Ksh 11 billion making it Equity Banks’s largest shareholder. The 12.2 percent is half Helios stake in Equity Bank, Kenya’s second largest bank after KCB with nearly 10 million customer accounts and approximately $4 billion in assets.
In a statement, Babatunde Soyoye, Managing Partner of Helios, said: “We are proud to have played a role in the bank’s growth and success to date, and look forward to continuing to partner with Equity in the next phase of its development and to support its direct positive impact on the lives of people in the communities within which it operates.”
This investment is strongly in line with Norfund’s strategy to support banks targeting entry level and mass-market retail banking, and SMEs, and strengthens our financial institutions investment portfolio in Africa. Kjell Roland, Managing Director of Norfund says the deal will help the bank embark on its new phase of strategic development.
Dr James Mwangi, Group CEO and Managing Director Equity Group Holding, expanded on the reasons for Equity seeking an alliance with Norfund: “We are excited by the expanded opportunities this development presents, to combine our market leading position with two strong international partners who bring along their substantial resources as well as expertise which we believe will be invaluable in accelerating the growth of our business.”
Helios recently raised $1.1 billion for investments in Africa. The sale bolsters their sum to make room for more investments in the continent.