Kingdom Zephyr co-CIO joins DPI

Sofiane Lahmar will reunite with former Kingdom CEO Runa Alam at Development Partners International as it deploys it debut fund.

Development Partners International (DPI), a nascent Africa-focused private equity firm, has hired Sofiane Lahmar as a partner. Lahmar is a former partner and co-chief investment officer of Kingdom Zephyr Africa Management and his new role will see him again work alongside Runa Alam, Kingdom Zephyr’s former chief executive officer.

A phone call to DPI’s office confirmed he had joined the staff, but he was unavailable to comment at press time.

Lahmar joins DPI as it is in the early stages of deploying it debut fund, understood to have raised more than $270 million for investment in a variety of sectors across Africa, with a particular emphasis on post-conflict, newly-liberalised countries such as Rwanda and Angola.

The fund made its debut investment, an undisclosed stake in telecoms business Q-Venture, in January last year.

DPI is a London-based private equity firm, which was founded in 2007 by Miles Moreland, formerly of Africa-focused investment company Blakeny Management, and Runa Alam.

Lahmar spent six years as an investment banker at JPMorgan before joining Kingdom Zephyr in July 2005.

Kingdom Zephyr – led by managing partner Kofi Bucknor –recently closed its second fund, Pan African Investment Partners II, on $492 million. The fund was just shy of its $500 million target but a significant jump in size from Fund I, which closed on $122.5 million in 2003.