Nairobi, Kenya, 30 January 2013: The Abraaj Group, a leading private equity investor operating in global growth markets, today announced an investment by its Africa Health Fund in Vine Pharmaceuticals, the largest pharmacy retail chain in Uganda.
The investment is the Africa Health Fund’s first in the pharmaceutical retail and distribution sector. It will help Vine to expand its reach and market share in Uganda’s rapidly growing pharmaceutical market, where expenditure is growing at a CAGR of 13% and forecast to increase from the US$ 268 million spent in 2011 to US$ 545 million by 2014.
The Africa Health Fund was established in June 2009 with the International Finance Corporation, The African Development Bank, DEG, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation as cornerstone investors. The Fund’s unique objective is to improve the access of low-income Africans to affordable, high quality health services while providing investors with strong long-term financial returns. The Africa Health Fund’s strategy is to tackle the issues of fragmentation in private healthcare provision and to drive economies of scale in supporting sectors such as pharmaceuticals, medical devices and diagnostic services.
Vine Pharmaceuticals was founded in 1999 and has grown to be the largest Ugandan pharmacy retailer, with 21 stores, 98 employees and a pharmaceutical import business. Abraaj will support Vine in extending its branch network outside Kampala, and building the capacity of its wholesale distribution business serving clinics, hospitals and other pharmacies.
Shakir Merali, Partner, The Abraaj Group, commented: “Vine will be an important beneficiary of the continued growth in pharmaceutical expenditure in Uganda through both its retail and wholesale businesses.”
“There will also be significant benefits for low-income Ugandans, with more consumers being put within easy reach of the basic health advice that a pharmacy can provide, and improvements to the availability of a comprehensive, up-to-date and affordable supply of drugs and other health products across the country.”
Grace Munyirwa, Founder and Director of Vine Pharmaceuticals, said: “I am proud of the work our team has done to take Vine to its leading position in the Ugandan market, and I am looking forward to taking the business to the next level with Abraaj’s support. Their expertise in the health sector and their track record of helping to grow businesses by investing in operational improvements and more sophisticated business management systems will make them the perfect partners as we expand our presence across the country and develop our promising wholesale business.”
The Abraaj Group is one of the leading private equity investors in the healthcare sector in growth markets around the world. Its Funds’ investments include stakes in the Philippines retail pharmacy chain HBC, and in Saudi Arabia’s Tadawi Group, both leaders in their local markets. Additionally, the Group has current investments in nine hospitals (following two recent successful healthcare exits in Asia), as well as in pharmaceuticals, diagnostics, and medical devices manufacturing.
In an op-ed in Institutional Investor, Abraaj's Group Chief Executive Arif Naqvi argues that in order to solve development challenges, an approach that is solely focused on the reliance of foreign aid cannot be the solution: rather, a partnership approach that is driven by the private sector, in conjunction with development financing institutions, will be a far more compelling answer. more >
Abraaj Group, one of the largest private equity investors in developing markets such as the Middle East and Latin America, has no plans to expand into North America and Europe even as firms on those continents increasingly move into emerging markets, Chief Executive Officer Arif Naqvi said. more >
The Abraaj Group, a leading investor operating in global growth markets, today announced that it has successfully exited its investment in leading Tunisian pharmaceutical company Unité de fabrication de médicaments (‘Unimed’ or the ‘Company’), through an initial public offering (‘IPO’) on the Tunis Stock Exchange. The Abraaj Group invested in Unimed through one of its Funds in 2011. Unimed represents the first IPO this year on the Tunis Stock Exchange, and the first in the pharmaceutical sector since 2007. more >
The recent adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals by the United Nations General Assembly has brought the requirement for businessworthy thinking to the fore. At the 2016 Business for Peace Summit on May 2nd, Group Chief Executive of The Abraaj Group and 2013 Oslo Business for Peace Honouree Arif Naqvi, and Chief Executive Officer of Unilever and 2015 Oslo Business for Peace Honouree Paul Polman, along with other business leaders signed a businessworthy pledge to commit towards accelerating the Global Goals: more >
Nadia Kaabi-Linke’s ‘Flying Carpets’ installation, commissioned for 2011 Abraaj Group Art Prize, is to become part of the Guggenheim New York permanent collection. Other featured winners include Kader Attia (Winner, Abraaj Group Art Prize 2010), Joana Hadjithomas and Khalil Joreige (Winning duo, Abraaj Group Art Prize 2012), Iman Issa (Winner, Abraaj Group Art Prize 2013) and Abbas Akhavan (Winner, Abraaj Group Art Prize 2014). more >