Aureos Backs Senegal Car Dealer

Compagnie Sahelienne d'Industries (“Matforce”), a Senegal-based car dealership and energy equipment provider, has raised $2.86 million from the Aureos West Africa Fund. The deal gives AWAF a 10% ownership position, and comes on top of a $2 million loan guarantee from AWAF that will enable Matforce to secure the equivalent loan funding in local currency.

Aureos West Africa Fund (AWAF), has made its first investment in Senegal in the Francophone zone in West Africa. AWAF has committed US$2.86 million to Compagnie Sahelienne d'Industries, which trades as Matforce, a car dealership and energy equipment provider.

Emerging markets private equity specialists Aureos Capital establised AWAF to invest in small and mid-sized companies in the West Africa region.

AWAF has acquired a 10% stake in the company and provided a US$2m loan guarantee facility to enable Matforce to secure the equivalent loan funding in local currency (Franc CFA). The investment is intended to finance the increased working capital needs of the company as a result of fast growth in its line of business.

Matforce has over 30 years experience of car dealerships and providing water and energy equipment, additionally offering after sales services for these activities. It represents well-known brands such as Hyundai, Mazda, Cummins and Alfa Laval. The company was bought out from Unilever in 1989.

Matforce, through its provision of power solutions to companies, is benefiting from the expansion of the mining, refinery and telecoms sectors in Senegal. The company is also a key part of regional and local development programmes such as rural electrification.

Jacob Kholi, Managing Partner of AWAF has said: “As our first transaction in Senegal, the investment in Matforce is strategic to the Fund. It is a well managed company and a leader in its business segment. It also gives us the opportunity to partner with a visible company in Senegal that is contributing to the economic development of the country.”

“Matforce has started to roll out its services and expertise to other countries in the region, thus providing a good fit into Aureos' model for investing in companies that can become regional forces.”

Jacques Conti, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Matforce comments: ''The shareholding profile and credibility of our company is clearly enhanced by AWAF's involvement. In the future this may mean access to the wider pool of funds from the Aureos family to help Matforce achieve its goal of profitable expansion across the sub-region to become a sub-regional player. It is the beginning of a long-term relationship.'' 

To date, AWAF, with US$50 million committed capital, has made nine investments in sectors such as manufacturing, oil services, financial services, FMGC, real estate development, ICT and general services across the West Africa Region.




Notes to editors:


Aureos Capital Ltd is a unique private equity fund management company, domiciled in Mauritius, which specialises in providing expansion and buy-out capital to unlisted mid-cap businesses across Asia, Africa and Latin America.


It was formed in July 2001 to assume management of 14 funds originally sponsored by CDC Group plc (the legacy portfolio) and to raise and manage a new generation of private equity funds under the Aureos brand, focusing on expansion and buy-out opportunities.


Since inception, Aureos has achieved 117 exits and as a result today's legacy portfolio comprises only 23 investments. The legacy portfolio consisted of a large number of early stage venture investments in frontier markets.


Over the same period, since 2001, Aureos has more than trebled its funds under management and has raised and/or managed nearly US$500 million and extended its geographical footprint to over 50 emerging markets.


Apart from Aureos employees, Aureos shareholders include CDC Group plc, Norfund and FMO which are, respectively, the British, Norwegian and Dutch development finance institutions. 


Investors in Aureos funds include institutional investors, foundations and trusts, family groups, high net worth individuals, development finance institutions and multilateral development banks.


Since the beginning of 2001 Aureos has established the following funds: