Abraaj has pioneered the private equity industry in many of the growth markets in which it operates. Our professionals have been making investments for over two decades, including leading some of the first private equity transactions ever made in our markets.

We have been able to shape our investment philosophy based on the nuances and opportunities that can only be fully appreciated by having local teams, who are connected to the linguistic, cultural, political, economic and legal intricacies of their geographies.

We combine this deeply embedded local access with the institutional oversight and capabilities of a global alternative asset manager. By being both local and global, we are able to bring best-in-class management and decision making experience to bear with each investment decision, across geographies and sectors.

c.US$7.7 BN
Investment and operating professionals

Our Strategy

Our Strategy

Abraaj invests in emerging consumers and the fast-growing cities where they live. Our mid-market private equity strategies focus on consumer-facing businesses capitalizing on increasing disposable incomes, lifestyle changes and supply-demand gaps in cities across our markets. While we target markets with compelling fundamental drivers at the macro level, our core view is that strong returns are generated by the ability to find, build and exit exceptional companies and assets.

Our criteria for investing in a potential partner company is built around two main tenets:

  • Rationale for Partnership: We look for businesses that have a desire to partner with smart global capital, with an aspiration for market leadership and best-in-class governance structures. The companies in which we invest will match our thematic, sectoral and geographical priorities and there will be a proven market need for the product or service that the company offers.
  • Driving the Growth Agenda: We are focused on active value creation and take a hands-on approach to driving the growth of the business.  In doing so we capture material upside through operational and strategic interventions and ensure alignment of incentives across all stakeholders.

Our Value Proposition

Our Value Proposition

Local Reach: Abraaj believes that there is no proxy for local presence in terms of its investment and operating activities which is why we insist on maintaining a local footprint in each of our operating markets.

90% of our investment professionals are from the regions they operate in. This has translated into a distinct advantage in sourcing privileged transactions for the Group.

Global Institution: We believe in the ‘One Firm’ approach as opposed to franchise operations that do not fully exploit true benefits of scale. Those benefits include:

  • Transferring lessons and insights across markets and sectors to structure better investments
  • The ability to source exit options internationally when local markets prove challenging
  • The knowledge and insight to transform local businesses into multi-regional and international champions

Operational Value Creation: Active value creation is at the heart of our investment thesis. Our operating capabilities have been designed to accelerate the performance of our partner companies through the deployment of proprietary value creation tools and processes. Our in-house operating team as well as a network of curated external experts combine to provide sector and functional expertise with a regional nuance.

Our unique value proposition combines the consistency of a global institutional platform with true local reach across 20+ markets. Scale and institutional rigor enable Abraaj to invest in itself, to attract and retain the best talent, build operational capabilities, and serve as an effective counter-party and credible partner to international buyers and commercially minded investors.

Insuring The Emerging Middle Class

Insuring the Emerging Middle Class

Abraaj Managing Director Ashish Patel shares his perspective on the growth drivers for insurance among the middle class and the investment opportunity this presents. He says, "Insurance is probably the first defense mechanism as wealth grows."
Abraaj To Acquire East Africa’s Leading Coffee Chain Java House

Abraaj to Acquire East Africa’s Leading Coffee Chain Java House

Java House is the largest casual dining / food services chain in East Africa with 60 outlets, serving over 320,000 guest checks per month and employs 2000 people. Abraaj to expand Java House into new markets and through acquisitions.
The New Champions: How Local Players Are Dominating Growth Markets

The New Champions: How Local Players Are Dominating Growth Markets

Buy Local, Be Local: Abraaj Managing Director Niels Bormans highlights why smart, local companies who have their pulse on market and demographic trends - and can respond with speed and agility to changing lifestyle preferences - are growing faster than multinationals.
Managing Private Equity Currency Risk In Growth Markets

Managing Private Equity Currency Risk in Growth Markets

Abraaj Partner Tom Speechley highlights the importance of differentiating currency level risk at the Fund and partner company level. Seasoned investors must have strong systems and processes in place to manage risk, including by structuring a diversified investment portfolio.