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Ethos secures advisory contract for Ninety One's PE funds

Anna Lyudvig
Dec. 15, 2020, 9:59 p.m.

Word count: 472

Ethos Private Equity has announced an agreement with JSE and LSE-listed investment manager Ninety One, to take on an advisory contract for Ninety One’s Africa Private Equity funds, effective as at December 15, 2020.

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Ethos Private Equity has announced an agreement with JSE and LSE-listed investment manager Ninety One, to take on an advisory contract for Ninety One’s Africa Private Equity funds, effective as at December 15, 2020.

Stuart MacKenzie, CEO, Ethos Private Equity, said: “This agreement with Ninety One is a strong endorsement of the Ethos platform and marks a significant milestone as we expand our activities on the continent in line with our pan-African diversification strategy. Ethos is committed to leveraging its private

equity expertise to support the African recovery journey and play its part in helping stabilize the sector post COVID-19. Challenging times call for seasoned stewardship, disciplined execution, and innovation. Our relationship with Ninety One is based on these principles, providing a clear path to value maximization for all stakeholders.”

The contract marks a milestone for Ethos, significantly extending its platform across the continent and reinforcing its commitment to a pan-African strategy. After more than three decades of private equity investment in Africa and $2bn of capital deployed, Ethos now manages or advises on 30 active investments across eight funds.

Ninety One’s Africa Private Equity funds (Fund I and Fund II), hold seven assets with a broad pan-African footprint, including Egypt and Morocco.

The assets invest in a diverse range of sectors across telecommunications (IHS), retail (Spinneys, Kamoso), private education (Richfield), financial services (IDM), and logistics (J&J, SJL Maghreb).

This is Ethos’ fourth initiative in recent years to build a broader African alternative asset management platform, with previous initiatives including the successful integration of the Ethos Mezzanine Partners team (2016), the launch of an Ethos AI fund (2018) and taking on management of Brait’s assets (2020).

John Green, CIO, Ninety One, said: “The decision to engage an adviser for our Africa Private Equity funds is in line with our commitment to simplifying our business while pursuing better outcomes for our limited partners. We are pleased to secure Ethos’ investment advisory expertise for our Africa Private Equity assets, as we believe their capability and strategic alignment with this opportunity will ensure the best possible result for investors.”

Ninety One will maintain control and oversight of the portfolio, while Ethos takes over day to day management of the assets in line with its advisory contract. Jonathan Matthews (Ethos Partner) will act as Managing Partner for the funds with support from Aliya Shariff (Ethos Partner), as well as Gerben Dijkstra and Nick Marsh, who both join Ethos from Ninety One as Partners, providing continuity on the assets.

Aliya Shariff, Partner, Ethos Private Equity, commented: “In spite of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ethos continues to see the African continent as an area for growth – through new investments, as well as expansion opportunities for Ethos portfolio companies. It’s a time of significant change for the private equity sector in Africa and we expect to see further opportunities like this going forward.”

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