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Private Equity De-Mystified! by deenee: 4:05pm On Jun 06, 2012
Definition of 'Private Equity'

Equity capital that is not quoted on a public exchange. Private equity consists of investors and funds that make investments directly into private companies or conduct buyouts of public companies that result in a de-listing of public equity. Capital for private equity is raised from retail and institutional investors, and can be used to fund new technologies, expand working capital within an owned company, make acquisitions, or to strengthen a balance sheet.  

The majority of private equity consists of institutional investors and accredited investors who can commit large sums of money for long periods of time. Private equity investments often demand long holding periods to allow for a turnaround of a distressed company or a liquidity event such as an IPO or sale to a public company.

(Adapted from Investopedia)

The concept of private equity is relatively new in Nigeria and was popularized during the privatization of federal agencies, deregulation of the telecomms industry and consolidation of the banking industry. PE investments in Nigeria cut across various sectors-infrastructure,agriculture, transportation and haulage,retail and hospitality,financial institutions, real estate, healthcare,tech, media and telecomms etc. Major players include Actis,ECP,ARM Capital partners,ACA,CBO Capital Partners, Alithelia Capital, ACM etc.

Some of the seminal deals include but not limited to the following: Palms Shopping Mall in Lagos and host of other malls scattered round the country. Major investments in telecomms, hotels especially around the Lagos metropolitan area (VI and environs),infrastructure e.g concessioning of the Lekki expressway on a B.O.T arrangement, capital injection into UBN and host of others that can't be cited because they are still in their "incubation" stage!

This is just a teaser for those enthusiasts (both home and abroad) that might be interested in a career in PE. Please feel free to ask your questions and contributions are also welcome.

1 Like

Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by tanimola22: 9:47pm On Jun 06, 2012
deenee: The concept of private equity is relatively new in Nigeria and was popularized during the privatization of federal agencies, deregulation of the telecomms industry and consolidation of the banking industry. PE investments in Nigeria cut across various sectors-infrastructure,agriculture, transportation and haulage,retail and hospitality,financial institutions, real estate, healthcare,tech, media and telecomms etc. Major players include Actis,ECP,ARM Capital partners,ACA,CBO Capital Partners, Alithelia Capital, ACM etc.

Some of the seminal deals include but not limited to the following: Palms Shopping Mall in Lagos and host of other malls scattered round the country. Major investments in telecomms, hotels especially around the Lagos metropolitan area (VI and environs),infrastructure e.g concessioning of the Lekki expressway on a B.O.T arrangement, capital injection into UBN and host of others that can't be cited because they are still in their "incubation" stage!

This is just a teaser for those enthusiasts (both home and abroad) that might be interested in a career in PE. Please feel free to ask your questions and contributions are also welcome.

Deenee, good one.

Can pension funds also allocate a portion of their wealth to private equity? In a bid to increase value and maximize absolute performance, are they also allowed go into private equity while still carrying out their primary responsibility, which is to manage retirement benefits of their subscribers in order to finance future consumption?

We have also heard that traditional HFs are increasingly moving into PEs, while PEs themselves are not decreasingly setting up and running HFs. What is your take on this? Do you foresee any clash of interests?

T22
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by deenee: 9:24am On Jun 07, 2012
You are quite correct PFAs (pension fund administrators) are allowed to allocate a certain proportion of their entire pension portfolio to private equity investments. However this is done with "cautious optimism". Most PFAs prefer to invest now in risk free government T bills and bonds that would only guarantee a small ROI but ensure the safety of the initial investment principal taking into account bitter lessons learnt from the last global financial crises and current volatility in the global markets. Bear in mind also, that PE transactions cut across all cadre of investments. One downside though is the risk of an asset/liability mismatch wherein there could be a call on the PE investments before the obligations are due.

I am also aware that HF managers also include some PE investments in their portfolio for diversification purposes but mainly those that can be disposed off easily to a counter party. Eg investments in social media like facebook,linkedIn,nano technology and bio tech investments. Most HF managers nowadays place counter party bets on contingent liabilities and engage in derivative trading. The downside to this is that whilst most HF transactions are consummated with a short term perspective in mind,good PE investment take an average 3-7 to mature.
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by inspirenet: 9:33am On Jun 07, 2012
Good one
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by ogasir2011: 9:46am On Jun 07, 2012
Thank you so much for this thread.

For about 2 weeks i have be thinking about Private Equity( Real Estate). I did a little research,i must say it is really an interesting and challenging venture.

Contribution will be appreciated.
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by feelamong(m): 9:52am On Jun 07, 2012
deenee:

The concept of private equity is relatively new in Nigeria and was popularized during the privatization of federal agencies, deregulation of the telecomms industry and consolidation of the banking industry. PE investments in Nigeria cut across various sectors-infrastructure,agriculture, transportation and haulage,retail and hospitality,financial institutions, real estate, healthcare,tech, media and telecomms etc. Major players include Actis,ECP,ARM Capital partners,ACA,CBO Capital Partners, Alithelia Capital, ACM etc.

Some of the seminal deals include but not limited to the following: Palms Shopping Mall in Lagos and host of other malls scattered round the country. Major investments in telecomms, hotels especially around the Lagos metropolitan area (VI and environs),infrastructure e.g concessioning of the Lekki expressway on a B.O.T arrangement, capital injection into UBN and host of others that can't be cited because they are still in their "incubation" stage!

This is just a teaser for those enthusiasts (both home and abroad) that might be interested in a career in PE. Please feel free to ask your questions and contributions are also welcome.

So if and when the deal invested in goes bust or doesnt go well.....is there any sort of guaranteed returns for those that have invested in the Private Equity coys?
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by deenee: 10:14am On Jun 07, 2012
@ feelamong, you have raised a vital question. Well, no matter the amount of due diligence conducted for a potential PE deal, there is bound to be one of two that go south or "bust" as cited by you. In this regard, there are several measures put in place to mitigate for this unintended outcome. The first is that comprehensive insurance cover is always provided hence the insurance company will bear the risk in this case.

Secondly and depending on the type of deal, additional debt funding can be included in the transaction to strengthen the balance sheet size of the company invested in. Here it could be that the company is facing short term liquidity problems.

If the transaction is on. B.O.T basis and consummated on behalf of a third party i.e. infrastructure or project finance, the is always an "exit clause" included in the transaction document that will compel the third party to reimburse any funds expended (at prevailing market rates) on the project till the point of exit.

Additionally, the assets of the company/ invested in could be auctioned through a process known as asset stripping and investors' funds returned. Assets here could range from patent rights to plant and machinery and even real estate.

The exit strategy used which is usually plotted on a "baseline,pessimistic and optimistic" scenario is largely determined by the nature of the PE deal. Quite frankly, no two PE deals are the same.
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by maclatunji: 10:54am On Jun 07, 2012
I am 100% interested, we need private equity investors in my organisation and I am not joking. If you have money to invest we have the ideas and we should talk on the modalities what percentage do you want? By the way, we are not looking for big money, we are a small business. Thank you.
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by ENZOSCIFO1: 11:12am On Jun 07, 2012
@ Maclatunji. I think what you need is a venture capitalist or even an angel investor

I have been involved with PE firms around the world for a little over four years. As I run a corporate finance boutique, and often I primarily use them (PE) as source of funds to finance clients deals and sometimes projects.
I would be most willing to help with some questions here (supposing I have the time) though answers might not come immediately really as u know I got to work, however, but I can assure to peep in everynight and respond to your queries.

1 Like

Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by maclatunji: 11:18am On Jun 07, 2012
ENZO SCIFO: @ Maclatunji. I think what you need is a venture

Venture Capital, Private Equity, Grants, Endowments... are semantics to me. At least, you get what I am talking about. grin

1 Like

Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by maclatunji: 11:25am On Jun 07, 2012
ENZO SCIFO: @ Maclatunji. I think what you need is a venture capitalist or even an angel investor

I have been involved with PE firms around the world for a little over four years. As I run a corporate finance boutique, and often I primarily use them (PE) as source of funds to finance clients deals and sometimes projects.
I would be most willing to help with some questions here (supposing I have the time) though answers might not come immediately really as u know I got to work, however, but I can assure to peep in everynight and respond to your queries.

You edited your post, my first question:
1. Do you have people willing to invest in Nigerian small businesses under any sort of investment vehicle and what are their requirements?
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by ENZOSCIFO1: 11:43am On Jun 07, 2012
maclatunji:

You edited your post, my first question:
1. Do you have people willing to invest in Nigerian small businesses under any sort of investment vehicle and what are their requirements?

Yeah I edited the post.To your question.Getting investors to do cross boarder investment in the range I suspect you are looking at is always very difficult and often the best is to try local market for funds below the 1M dollar mark. Even that mark is a recent developmnent cos some 2-3 yrs back the minimum cross boarder investment were in the minimum of 20M USD.
Do you have a written business plan? If so are you willing to share it? You can send an executive summary to me and let's take it from there.

1 Like

Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by philip0906(m): 11:57am On Jun 07, 2012
Please can someone lecture me a bit about Private Equity? whats its all about? or give me a link I can read up.
Thanks
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by maclatunji: 11:58am On Jun 07, 2012
Hmmmmm... I will look into that. Thank you.
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by deenee: 12:33pm On Jun 07, 2012
@ maclatunji,
I think what you will need is a venture capitalist or angel investor. I might be wrong but I suspect that your intended transaction or business might not fall within the minimum threshold that will command the attention of a PE firm in Nigeria. Either way, you still need to have a business plan to back up your request.
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by maclatunji: 12:58pm On Jun 07, 2012
philip0906: Please can someone lecture me a bit about Private Equity? whats its all about? or give me a link I can read up.
Thanks

Since you asked so nicely. Read this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Private_Equity
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by maclatunji: 1:00pm On Jun 07, 2012
deenee: @ maclatunji,
I think what you will need is a venture capitalist or angel investor. I might be wrong but I suspect that your intended transaction or business might not fall within the minimum threshold that will command the attention of a PE firm in Nigeria. Either way, you still need to have a business plan to back up your request.

I know, I know... sometimes you just want to take a wild shot maybe you will be lucky?
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by manny4life(m): 1:04pm On Jun 07, 2012
@OP, great post

philip0906: Please can someone lecture me a bit about Private Equity? whats its all about? or give me a link I can read up.
Thanks

From the name "Private + Equity = Private Equity". Therefore, taking one step at a time in relation to finance, what is equity? Equity all depends in what context it's defined, for basic understanding, equity in finance or accounting is simply defined as a form of interest or perhaps ownership/stake in company's Assets (Assets = Liabilities + Owners Equity). Therefore, if you reverse the equation, Owners Equity becomes Assets - Liabilities.

In this case, the OP stated what a PE firm is. Most at times, companies enrolled into fund management like your 401k, IRA, etc are good PE firms. At times, they own a small portion of stake of the company they control. Take for instance, in my 401k plan, I enrolled in both really aggressive (high risk 755) and moderate social plan (low risk 25%). Keep in mind, my fund management firm has several hundreds of funds they invest in.

Therefore, in my social plan, I elected to invest in companies that are primarily in the business of social awareness for instance companies that are not in the business of making cigars/cigarettes, or abortion pills etc. These firms like OP has stated raise capital, or buyout smaller companies.

1 Like

Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by philip0906(m): 1:43pm On Jun 07, 2012
maclatunji:

Since you asked so nicely. Read this http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Private_Equity
Thanks. . .
manny4life: @OP, great post



From the name "Private + Equity = Private Equity". Therefore, taking one step at a time in relation to finance, what is equity? Equity all depends in what context it's defined, for basic understanding, equity in finance or accounting is simply defined as a form of interest or perhaps ownership/stake in company's Assets (Assets = Liabilities + Owners Equity). Therefore, if you reverse the equation, Owners Equity becomes Assets - Liabilities.

In this case, the OP stated what a PE firm is. Most at times, companies enrolled into fund management like your 401k, IRA, etc are good PE firms. At times, they own a small portion of stake of the company they control. Take for instance, in my 401k plan, I enrolled in both really aggressive (high risk 755) and moderate social plan (low risk 25%). Keep in mind, my fund management firm has several hundreds of funds they invest in.

Therefore, in my social plan, I elected to invest in companies that are primarily in the business of social awareness for instance companies that are not in the business of making cigars/cigarettes, or abortion pills etc. These firms like OP has stated raise capital, or buyout smaller companies.
thanks a lot
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by mkmyers45(m): 2:37pm On Jun 07, 2012
Has been looking P.E and V.C possibilities for quite a while now..
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by Beowulf(m): 2:52pm On Jun 07, 2012
Nice thread OP. I have been involved in a few PE transactions here in Nigeria though I don't work for any of the PE firms.
I know many people who are really interested in PE but the amount of funds involved are quite forbidding. There are lots of opportunities in our economy that are crying out for PE investments.

Inasmuch as one really needs huge cash outlay to start a PE outfit, I think that one can always start small. Pool funds with like-minded friends and focus on low-risk/high-yield investments. Yea, such investment opportunities really do exist. Then focus on ploughing back the profits into the Funds and growing it gradually. Easier said than done by the way.

Anyone here know where ECP's offices are in Lagos?

2 Likes

Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by maclatunji: 3:17pm On Jun 07, 2012
Beowulf: Nice thread OP. I have been involved in a few PE transactions here in Nigeria though I don't work for any of the PE firms.
I know many people who are really interested in PE but the amount of funds involved are quite forbidding. There are lots of opportunities in our economy that are crying out for PE investments.

Inasmuch as one really needs huge cash outlay to start a PE outfit, I think that one can always start small. Pool funds with like-minded friends and focus on low-risk/high-yield investments. Yea, such investment opportunities really do exist. Then focus on ploughing back the profits into the Funds and growing it gradually. Easier said than done by the way.

Anyone here know where ECP's offices are in Lagos?

This post reflects some of my thoughts. We Africans seem to be lazy, capital sourcing options under any of the umbrellas that the west have defined to suit themselves can be adapted to suit local needs instead of restricting ourselves to textbook definitions of what they are and how they ought to function.
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by nitrogen(m): 10:01pm On Jun 10, 2012
@denee, please, when a private equity firm invests newly, and maybe 5-10 years is the target maturity period, what happens after the period as per the ownership of the investment, is it that the investment is sold off and the capital is returned to the individual investors or the firm still maintains the ownership? If the later is it, then how is the capital recouped?

Case study here is the Actis west africa and the new shopping mall at ikeja. What happens afterwards (set period)?

Please pardon my ignorance.

1 Like

Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by deenee: 7:24pm On Jun 11, 2012
@nitrogen, apologies for the delayed response. "I am currently doing "360 in a 120 lane". There are many exit strategies for a PE investment. The strategy used will be largely determined by the duration of the investment, amount involved, type of deal originated,marco economic condition and investment climate just to mention a few. This said, I have included some theory for your attention whilst making an attempt to answer your question.

"PE exit strategy"
A private equity firm receives the lion’s share of its returns upon exit of an investment. (The remainder is realised along the way as dividends, distributions, management fees and capital returns.) The Exit Strategies and Methods for Private Equity Funds include the following:

Trade sale: this is the most common exit for private equity. The reason being that trade buyers in the same industry are often more likely to have synergies with the business. Therefore, they are the most natural buyers of the business and, ipso facto, trade buyers can pay the highest price.

Public listing: in the right market conditions, an IPO can lead to very fruitful outcomes for business owners. The major benefit of an IPO is that the business owners don’t need to subscribe to a raft of warranties and earnout conditions, which are usually present in a trade sale. The downside is that the process is relatively costly and the results are acutely sensitive to market movements.

Recapitalisation: in some cases, the management team and other shareholders may decide they want to continue running the business after the private equity firm exits. Recapitalising the business (usually with debt) and using the new capital to buyout the private equity owner can achieve this.

Secondary sale: this involves selling the business to another financial investor (usually another private equity fund). Although this seems perverse, (you’d imagine if one private equity firm didn’t want the investment, others wouldn’t either), a deviation from a firm’s investment mandate can drive it (e.g. the business is getting too large for the fund to support).

There are other less common Exit Strategies and Methods for Private Equity Funds, but these are by far the most common way for PE to sell investments and move on

(Adapted from Private Equiteers)

This said, the most common exit strategy is usually through a public flotation. However, the apathy in the capital market has made this strategy highly unpopular, thus other plausible alternatives are considered. The Ikeja shopping mall investments presents good business case study for this. I suspect that the exit strategy will be based on a B.O.T contract (build, operate and transfer) with the occupants of the mall. A B.O.T contract is a type of arrangement in which the private sector builds an infrastructure project, operates it and eventually transfers ownership of the project to the government or new owners. This kind of contract is typical for most long term infrastructure development.

3 Likes

Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by nitrogen(m): 5:44am On Jun 12, 2012
^ thanks.
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by moremi2008(m): 1:00am On Jun 15, 2012
The PE industry in Nigeria is at its very infancy. Very few of them have made boast-worthy returns and many of them lose their shirts trying to structure US-style deals in Nigeria (e.g. ECP). In fact, only Helios appears to know what it's doing (there might be a couple more that I am not familiar with). Whatever happened to the new Carlyle office? Have they made any investments yet? There are probably one-off deals in every sector but the problem is that all it takes is one or two large investments in one sector to crowd out returns and close that sector to further investment(e.g. mobile telecoms). One of Nigeria's most promising sectors is infrastructure but infrastructure returns are generally low, require longer hold periods and involve too much government/regulatory risk. I hear real estate is hot cake these days but I suspect that's mostly hype (there is only so much room for luxury hotels and high-end residences).

However, identifying the right opportunity is the very least of the problems with PE investing in Nigeria. Exit ops are very poor with barely-functioning capital markets and a limited pool of deep-pocketed strategic buyers. The currency translation risks involved with Naira-denominated returns on Dollar-denominated distributions to LPs are considerable. Just forget about LBOs in Nigeria; where are the lenders going to come from? You try servicing debt at rates that equal equity cost-of-capital in the US and come tell us how that goes! What about political risk, management risk and Nigeria's fragile macro-economy? All it takes is a severe oil price shock or a non-democratic regime change to send the economy into a tail-spin. We'll see what's left when the awouf money dries up.

I have had a few offers to do Africa-focused PE in the past but turned them down because I don't believe much of the PE story in SS Africa (except SA), yet. I'll reconsider when I approach partner-levels in a few years.

3 Likes

Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by deenee: 2:01pm On Jun 15, 2012
@ moremi, you are quite correct, the PE industry in Nigeria is plagued with many teething issues some of which you have elaborated in your post. However, it is not all "gloom and doom" as you have put it. Most of the foreign PE firms now understand that they cannot structure PE transactions as obtained in the US/West and quite a number of them have picked up steep learning points from some of their botched deals.

This said, there are some deals worthy of mention in the TMT sector, real estate, infrastructure,F.I, healthcare and recently retail and hospitality. Additionally, one of the majors risks faced by these firms is "currency risk" especially those that have foreign partners or have raised funds from abroad.

I presume you are also based abroad so I will suggest that do a little bit of research like me. I recently came across an individual in NY who was on holiday and who works for a LLP that handles all of Dangote's PE transactions (Nascon, Dangsugar, Dangcem just to mention a few) I initially thought he was just "dropping names" until I visited their office somewhere in a very quiet part of Ikoyi. I cannot say more at this point.
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by Network7: 10:37pm On Jun 15, 2012
This is really a nice thread. Indeed Private Equity holds the key to a brighter future for Entrepreneurs..... There is a dire need for PEs that can come to the level of Small and medium scale Businesses......

Anybody working with a PE firm that supports small and medium scale investment ideas? Kindly pop in a blank mail to htv_ceo@yahoo.com.

There are some ideas on the table.
Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by moremi2008(m): 8:08am On Jun 17, 2012
deenee: @ moremi, you are quite correct, the PE industry in Nigeria is plagued with many teething issues some of which you have elaborated in your post. However, it is not all "gloom and doom" as you have put it. Most of the foreign PE firms now understand that they cannot structure PE transactions as obtained in the US/West and quite a number of them have picked up steep learning points from some of their botched deals.

This said, there are some deals worthy of mention in the TMT sector, real estate, infrastructure,F.I, healthcare and recently retail and hospitality. Additionally, one of the majors risks faced by these firms is "currency risk" especially those that have foreign partners or have raised funds from abroad.

I presume you are also based abroad so I will suggest that do a little bit of research like me. I recently came across an individual in NY who was on holiday and who works for a LLP that handles all of Dangote's PE transactions (Nascon, Dangsugar, Dangcem just to mention a few) I initially thought he was just "dropping names" until I visited their office somewhere in a very quiet part of Ikoyi. I cannot say more at this point.

I guess the real challenge is finding a stable and scale-able PE investment structure that works for Nigeria. In the West, PE funds are usually separate from venture capital funds, real estate funds and even infrastructure funds. Nigeria's funds seem to be a hodge-podge of everything and thus, they struggle to achieve consistent returns. I am sure that there are several one-off fantastic deals in all the industries you mentioned. But those deals are not enough to deliver 30%+ returns for two or three fully-invested $1bn+ funds.

If it's your calling to go manage money for Dangote, then please go for it! It's a fantastic opportunity. As for me, I am trying to be like Dangote himself, not help him get even richer! LOL!!!!!

2 Likes

Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by deenee: 9:58pm On Jun 17, 2012
@ moremi,I still repeat without trying to sound like a "broken record", that the PE terrain is not as bad as you connote. I also think that the comparison you are drawing with the "West" is flawed. PE is still very new in Nigeria whilst in the "West" PE transactions have been in existence for close to a century hence the "level playing ground" that would make your analogy credible is missing.

Additionally, there have been attempts to structure PE transactions in the past some of which didn't end well. ("Linkserve" deal comes to mind). However, a handful of firms are involved in some ground breaking transactions and have put in place some form of structure around their funds. For example, ARM Capital partners has the Infrastructure fund out of which they have drawn funds to invest in Lekki Concession Coy responsible for managing about 50 klm of road along the Lekki/Ajah axis for LASG. There is also the retail and hospitality fund out of which they have pooled resources for the construction of Four Points Sheraton, V.I and a host of other hospitality outlets under construction. There is the real estate fund managed by ARM properties and a TMT fund with investments in a handful of outdoor advertising firms. ACA also has something similar to this. I am not trying to hold sway for PE firms in Nigeria, because there is still plenty room for improvement, but I think that they deserve some commendation especially when we consider the larger marco- economic environment and policy inconsistency in Nigeria- a condition that is not prevalent in the "West". In terms of transaction value, I am not aware of any coy (except the Dangote group and a major telco) that has done any deal in excess of $1 billion. A lot of these deals are done in tranches hence you can have a PE firm investing first and foremost in a pioneer transaction and later increasing their holdings by way of more investments(e.g construction of malls, REITS etc) .

You speak of 30+ returns being a herculean task. Actis and ECP made 3 times ROI when they divested from Starcomms. Another PE firm wholly owned by a Nigerian made 4 times ROI when they divested from a major telco via a private placement. Same also from ABC transport. There are also some PIPE(private investment in a public entity) transactions that also yielded superlative returns especially during the IPO craze of 2006-2008. I can go on and on if not for "confidentiality" reasons.

Besides, I work with a bulge bracket PE firm here in the USA with HO in the Cayman islands and with SIGNIFICANT investments in tech start ups around Silicon valley. We have structured some deals in real estate, healthcare, entertainment esp. box office movies etc I can tell you that apart from healthcare,entertainment (which has a shorter gestation period by the way) and tech start ups, no other PE investment will guarantee you a 30+ ROI. Is it real estate where house prices keep falling everyday, or infrastructure that is supported via govt. concessions and tarrifs. Tech start ups will also have a hard time now especially with the recent bungling of the highly anticipated facebook IPO.
On a personal note, success has a relative definition. For some, it simply means having a regular 9-5 job that will offer them the comfort of a home, car, funds to send their kids to college, a modest retirement savings account (RSA) whilst they live their life "one step at a time". For others, success is defined in "Quantum Leap" terms where life is lived on the edge. I think, that I know what my definition of success is and I am certain that it is not based on another person's yardstick. BEST OF LUCK to you however you wish to define your "SUCCESS"

P.S The thread is not about PE investments in West vs. PE in Nigeria. It is just to educate and create awareness. Please let's take note of this.

1 Like

Re: Private Equity De-Mystified! by tanimola22: 10:56pm On Jun 17, 2012
deenee: @ moremi,I still repeat without trying to sound like a "broken record", that the PE terrain is not as bad as you connote. I also think that the comparison you are drawing with the "West" is flawed. PE is still very new in Nigeria whilst in the "West" PE transactions have been in existence for close to a century hence the "level playing ground" that would make your analogy credible is missing.

Additionally, there have been attempts to structure PE transactions in the past some of which didn't end well. ("Linkserve" deal comes to mind). However, a handful of firms are involved in some ground breaking transactions and have put in place some form of structure around their funds. For example, ARM Capital partners has the Infrastructure fund out of which they have drawn funds to invest in Lekki Concession Coy responsible for managing about 50 klm of road along the Lekki/Ajah axis for LASG. There is also the retail and hospitality fund out of which they have pooled resources for the construction of Four Points Sheraton, V.I and a host of other hospitality outlets under construction. There is the real estate fund managed by ARM properties and a TMT fund with investments in a handful of outdoor advertising firms. ACA also has something similar to this. I am not trying to hold sway for PE firms in Nigeria, because there is still plenty room for improvement, but I think that they deserve some commendation especially when we consider the larger marco- economic environment and policy inconsistency in Nigeria- a condition that is not prevalent in the "West". In terms of transaction value, I am not aware of any coy (except the Dangote group and a major telco) that has done any deal in excess of $1 billion. A lot of these deals are done in tranches hence you can have a PE firm investing first and foremost in a pioneer transaction and later increasing their holdings by way of more investments(e.g construction of malls, REITS etc) .

You speak of 30+ returns being a herculean task. Actis and ECP made 3 times ROI when they divested from Starcomms. Another PE firm wholly owned by a Nigerian made 4 times ROI when they divested from a major telco via a private placement. Same also from ABC transport. There are also some PIPE(private investment in a public entity) transactions that also yielded superlative returns especially during the IPO craze of 2006-2008. I can go on and on if not for "confidentiality" reasons.

Besides, I work with a bulge bracket PE firm here in the USA with HO in the Cayman islands and with SIGNIFICANT investments in tech start ups around Silicon valley. We have structured some deals in real estate, healthcare, entertainment esp. box office movies etc I can tell you that apart from healthcare,entertainment (which has a shorter gestation period by the way) and tech start ups, no other PE investment will guarantee you a 30+ ROI. Is it real estate where house prices keep falling everyday, or infrastructure that is supported via govt. concessions and tarrifs. Tech start ups will also have a hard time now especially with the recent bungling of the highly anticipated facebook IPO.
On a personal note, success has a relative definition. For some, it simply means having a regular 9-5 job that will offer them the comfort of a home, car, funds to send their kids to college, a modest retirement savings account (RSA) whilst they live their life "one step at a time". For others, success is defined in "Quantum Leap" terms where life is lived on the edge. I think, that I know what my definition of success is and I am certain that it is not based on another person's yardstick. BEST OF LUCK to you however you wish to define your "SUCCESS"

P.S The thread is not about PE investments in West vs. PE in Nigeria. It is just to educate and create awareness. Please let's take note of this.

Deenee, I think 'all join'. In the process of comparing and counter comparing, we all get to learn more and more.

T22

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