Home Startups Amethis secures $101 million in funding to invest in North African SMEs

Amethis secures $101 million in funding to invest in North African SMEs

by Weddy Thuranira
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Amethis, an investment fund manager focused on long-term responsible investing across Africa, has announced the first closing of Amethis MENA Fund II, which raised $101 million (€85 million).

The Fund is Amethis’ second SME MENA fund and fifth overall fund, with majority and minority investments ranging from EUR 5 to 15 million in fast-growing small-to-medium sized enterprises in Morocco, Egypt, Tunisia, and Jordan. It succeeds AMF I, formerly known as CNAV II, a Maghreb SME fund that Amethis successfully restructured in 2018.

The European Investment Bank (EIB), Proparco via FISEA+ (the AFD Group fund advised by Proparco and part of the Choose Africa initiative), the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), and the International Finance Corporation have all offered to lend their support to AMFII (IFC).

Together with its partner, the Edmond de Rothschild Group, it has also gathered a large number of qualified private investors, accounting for one-third of the first closing.

Co-Founders Luc Rigouzzo and Laurent Demey stated: “The launch of Amethis MENA Fund II is an important strategic milestone for Amethis that builds on our strong presence in Morocco and existing strategy of backing successful entrepreneurs across the African continent. Amethis strongly believes in SME investing, and AMF II is the third SME vehicle managed by Amethis, alongside its larger mid-cap pan-African funds.“

AMF II has so far invested in one company, Magriser, a leading distributor of micro-irrigation systems in Morocco, with several other transactions in the works and due to close in the coming months. The Fund will be closely managed by a team at Amethis led by Wilfried Poyet, Adnane Zerhouni, and Toufic Khoueiry, all of whom have extensive experience in the region’s major markets.

Wilfried Poyet commented,“AMF II brings a real solution and a deeply entrepreneurial DNA to the development of SMEs, as well as a response to the succession issues that managers encounter.”

Adnane Zerhouni stated, ”AMF II will support our region’s SME entrepreneurs. The potential for development is certain, and we aim to help our partners benefit from identified growth levers.”

Toufic Khoueiry commented, “The MENA region enjoys a dense fabric of high-quality SMEs operating across exciting sectors. Through AMF II, we will seek to partner with growth-minded founders, providing effective support locally and beyond.”

AMF II’s final closing is scheduled for July 2022, with several investors currently in due diligence.

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