Abraaj Capital is the biggest private equity group in the Middle East, North Africa and South Asia (MENASA). Since inception in 2002, we have raised about US$ 7 billion and distributed almost US$ 3 billion to our investors. With our headquarters in Dubai, the Abraaj Group operates seven offices in the region including in Istanbul, Cairo and Riyadh. We have made 36 investments in 11 countries and achieved more than 20 exits. About 80 world-class investment professionals work for Abraaj Capital.
Abraaj Capital manages seven Funds; four buyout Funds; Riyada Enterprise Development Fund, a Fund dedicated to small and medium enterprises; ASAS, an income-generating, sale-and-leaseback Fund; and a real estate Fund. Funds under management at the end of 2009 were US$ 6.6 billion. Funds managed by Abraaj Group have holdings in about two dozen companies in the region including Air Arabia, the region’s biggest low-cost carrier; Acibadem Healthcare Group, Turkey’s largest privately owned hospital operator; and Al Borg Laboratories, the Middle East’s biggest privately owned medical-testing laboratory company.
Abraaj Capital has won many regional and international awards, including five consecutive years as ‘Middle Eastern Private Equity Firm of the Year’ from London-based Private Equity International. Abraaj Capital Ltd., a member of the Abraaj Group, is licensed by the Dubai Financial Services Authority. As an associate member of the European Venture Capital Association, Abraaj Capital is committed to a corporate governance process that ensures adherence to global best practice and transparency in its operations. The firm is committed to being at the forefront of thought leadership in the region.
No matter how diverse, all of our investments share one common denominator: the potential to deliver significant value for our investors. We will only invest in a company that meets our strict criteria – which we assess through rigorous due diligence and an exhaustive screening processes. But that is only the beginning. The most significant portion of the returns generated for investors comes from Abraaj’s ability to help a company’s management realise the full potential of their business. We instill change in all of these businesses that we buy across the region by improving their operating processes, their governance and their systems. This allows them to better perform in their market place, which is ultimately recognized by all stakeholders.
Alongside Abraaj Capital’s management, our shareholders include some of the most prominent institutions, business groups, leading entrepreneurs and business people: Chairman, Sheikh Abdulrahman Ali Al Turki (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia); Vice Chairman, Mr. Hussain Al Nowais (UAE), Al Jaber Group (UAE); Mr. Hamid Jafar (UAE), Mr. Saud Kanoo (Bahrain), Sheikh Khaled bin Zayed Al Nehayan, Sheikh Sultan bin Saqr Al Qassimi (UAE), Sheikh Nawaf Nasser bin Khalid Al Thani (Qatar), Mr. Fadi Ghandour (Jordan), Deutsche Bank represented by Saleh Romeih, DIFC Investments (Dubai), Public Institution for Social Security (Kuwait), Al Qudra Holdings (Abu Dhabi), Zabeel Investments (Dubai) and Qatar Pension Fund.
Abraaj Capital has arguably the most experienced investment management team in the region and a number of our key professionals have worked together for several years. As a result of our deep and long standing commitment to the region, our team has extensive knowledge and experience in both sourcing and exiting deals as well as managing portfolio companies. Our private equity investment strategy is to acquire controlling or significant interests with board representation in stable, mature, well-managed businesses and create value through operational and financial improvements, management incentives and the use of leverage. Where appropriate we focus on a ‘Buy and Build’ strategy and believe in investing in businesses that will maximise shareholder value through strong operational growth and substantial capital appreciation. Our ultimate objective is to realise value through structured exits to strategic and trade buyers or onto public markets in the region and beyond, within a three to five year investment horizon.
Our investment professionals take primary responsibility for execution. Their skills and knowledge are further complemented by specialist external advisors and consultants, who are retained to assist in the evaluation and execution processes.