Abraaj buys Egyptian medical testing group

The UAE buyout firm has taken an Egyptian laboratory group private, as it continues in the vanguard of private equity firms in the North African country.

Abraaj Capital, the United Arab Emirates buyout firm, has bought a 76.9 percent stake in Al Borg Laboratory, the Egyptian-listed medical testing group for EGP778 million (€93.6 million; $145 million).

Abraaj has acquired slightly less than 3.5 million shares at EGP225 per share.   

Abraaj has done several deals in Egypt in the last year. In June it led a consortium to buy the Egyptian Fertilizers Company for $1.41 billion (€908 million). In November it also exited a 24.62 percent stake in EFG Hermes, the investment bank, for around $1.1 billion, to Dubai Financial Group, owned by Dubai Holding, the investment firm owned by the ruler of Dubai, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. The sale price was double what Abraaj paid in 2006. 

In March it opened an office in Egypt under Yaser Gamali, the former chief executive of MAF Trust, the investment company.

Other recent deals in the country include Actis, which bought a 70 percent stake in Sinai Marble, a construction company, for an undisclosed sum last year.

Al Borg has 60 laboratories in Egypt and a minority stake in Mokhtabar Al Borg, which has 14 branches in Saudi Arabia, four in the UAE and a recently opened laboratory in Qatar. The group works in all fields of laboratory medicine.

The company carries our 5 million tests per year and employs more than 1,000 professionals.

A statement said Abraaj’s investment would facilitate the long-term expansion of the company across the Middle East, North Africa and Southern Asia region.