Nigerian buyout firm Travant Capital Partners is raising a $300 million (€219 million) fund largely from indigenous investors to invest across West and Central Africa, according to someone close to the company.
The fund is headed up by local businessmen Andrew Alli, formerly country manager of the investment arm of the World Bank IFC in Nigeria and Southern Africa as well as Osaze Osifo, an investment banker at HSBC who set up Ocean and Oil Holding, an investment company for the oil and gas industry.
The fund expects the first close in October on $150 million and then aims to raise the entire sum six months later.
Andrew Alli, from Travant, said: “Very few fund managers have tried to raise money indigenously but the vast majority of people investing in this fund will be from Nigeria.” This would not have been possible five years ago, he said.
The fund will invest from Mauritania down to Angola with a substantial proportion invested in Nigeria, reflecting the size of the economy.
It is one of a wave of funds targeting indigenous investors in the African region. Recently Venture Partners Botswana revealed it was raising a $150 million Southern African fund. Vectis Capital also recently closed a £35 million fund for investment across West Africa.
The Nigerian economy has had a highly exciting year, with strong private equity and international investment in the banking sector. The heavy activity in the banking sector has raised broader hopes that the capital markets will become more sophisticated providing a greater variety of financial instruments.
Law firm O’Melveny & Myers is advising Travant.