Aureos invests in Papua New Guinea chemicals company

The London-based private equity firm has bought a 15.3 percent stake in Chemica, the fifth investment from its Pacific Island-focused fund.

Emerging markets specialist Aureos Capital has acquired a 15.3 percent stake in Chemica for an undisclosed sum.

Chemica retails and wholesales agro-chemicals, stock feed and hardware products in Papua New Guinea.

The investment, made out of Aureos’ Kula Fund II, will help with the strategic direction of the company as well as in the implementation of the company’s growth strategies, according to Michael Bromley, chairman of Chemica.

Set up in 2006, Kula II is a $16 million fund that focuses on investments in Pacific Island countries. It invests between $100,000 and $3 million per transaction.

To date, the fund has completed five investments worth $6.67 million in total: two in Papua New Guinea and one each in Fiji, Tonga and Vanuatu.

In September, Kula II invested 1.6 million Tongan Pa’anga ($766,000; €564,000) to acquire a 30 percent stake in Pacific Retail, a Tongan retailing company that focuses on office equipment, duty free shops, hardware and construction projects.

In the same month, the firm invested $10 million out of its Central Asian fund for a controlling stake in Leasing Group, a Kazakhstani equipment leasing company. In October, it invested another $5 million out of the fund in Ala TV, a Kyrgyz television network.

Founded in 2001, Aureos has since established 16 regional private equity funds which cover more than 50 emerging markets in Asia, Africa and Latin America.