IFC commits USD 25 mn in Lorax Capital’s new SMEs private equity fund
PRIVATE EQUITY WATCH- The International Finance Corporation (IFC) has committed USD 25 mn to Lorax Capital’s SME-focused PE fund, LCP II, it said in a statement (pdf) overnight. The fund, managed by Egyptian private equity outfit Lorax Capital Partners, has already secured commitments of c. USD 142 mn from other limited partners including the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, the European Investment Bank, and the French Development Agency’s Proparco, we noted this week. Lorax is targeting a USD 250 mn final close for LCP II, which will primarily focus on long-term investments in Egyptian SMEs.
What IFC had to say: “We expect IFC’s participation will help bring in more private capital into the Egyptian private equity market, increasing its competitiveness, diversifying the investor base, and ultimately improving access to capital for mid-cap Egyptian companies,” said Walid Labadi, the IFC’s Egypt country manager.
We recently had a sit-down with Labadi for our Spotlight section, who told us that inclusion — which involves investing in education, promoting financial inclusion, and facilitating access to finance for small businesses — is a key pillar of the IFC’s strategy in Egypt.