Aureos backs Panama aluminium business(2)

Aureos has invested $5m in a Panama aluminium company, as the expansion of the Panama Canal continues to drive growth in the country’s construction sector.

Emerging markets specialist Aureos Capital has invested $5 million in Aluminio de Panama, a Central American manufacturing business.

Aluminio de Panama turns aluminium rods into different shapes for use in windows and doors, building structures, and motor vehicles. It exports its products to the US, Central America and the Caribbean.

Erik Peterson, managing partner of Aureos’ fund, said: “Aluminio de Panama is well positioned to take advantage of the strong economic growth in Panama driven by the construction sector and the Panama Canal expansion.”

Miguel Amado D’Orazio, president and chief executive of Aluminio de Panama, said the investment would allow the necessary technological upgrade of his company’s plant facility which will allow the manufacturer to consolidate its leadership position in Panama and penetrate new markets.

The investment will come from Aureos’ $36 million Central America Fund, which invests in Central America and the Dominican Republic. Investors in the fund include UK-based CDC Capital Partners, Norway-based Norfund, and the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs.

Aureos is also raising $300 million for a Latin America Fund. The fund, which will invest in mid-market companies in Mexico, Central America and the Andean Region, is expected to hold a first close by the third quarter of 2007.