Zoom on our partners : What better way to mark the French National Day, this 14th of July, than through the celebration of the rock-solid long-term partnership between CIEL Finance and the Paris-based group Amethis Finance? On the 25th of February 2015, both groups teamed up to to expand their footprint in Africa and the Indian Ocean.
The year is 2012. Luc Rigouzzo and Laurent Demey, previously CEO and Deputy CEO of Proparco, a French Development Financial Institution (DFI), partner up with Edmond de Rothschild Private Equity. From this partnership, Amethis Finance was created. The group’s initial goal: to create an investment fund entirely dedicated to long-term responsible financing in Africa. Numerous private investors, including financial institutions and family offices, gradually join Amethis Finance who benefits from an initial investment capacity of USD 150 million and a total of USD 530 million in equity and in debt at the end of a successful fundraising.
The founders were joined in 2013 by skilled and multicultural industry specialists with a deep knowledge of Africa and a sound experience on the Continent. The team, composed essentially of a mix of European investment professionals, with long-term professional exposure to Africa, and African nationals, who have achieved their academic success in Europe, is a strong differentiating factor and representative of the transition characterising African investment markets.
Motivated to tap into the significant potential offered by the financial institutions landscape in Sub-saharan Africa, Amethis Finance dedicates 40% of its activity to this industry. By investing both in debt and equity, with high objectives in terms of development, social, environmental and governance matters, Amethis Finance has positioned itself as the provider of a full set of long-term financial instruments, while delivering attractive performance to its investors.
In February 2015, Amethis Finance has taken a 17.1% participation in CIEL Finance Ltd. A participation that was increased to 24.9% during the course of the same year, parallel to the transfer under CIEL Finance of CIEL Limited’s participation in BNI Madagascar. This transaction was the first step of a successful expansion plan for CIEL Finance. At that time, the Financial Institutions Head at Amethis Finance, Laureen Kouassi-Olsson declared that:
“The sub-Saharan Africa financial sector is key to us and this partnership with CIEL Finance is a testimony of our commitment to support, in the long run, pure African financial players in their expansion within the continent. CIEL Finance and its subsidiaries will benefit from the synergies offered by our portfolio and track record in the African Financial Institutions’ space”.