Aureos Sells Shelys Africa

Aureos Capital has sold its stake in Shelys Africa Ltd. to Aspen Pharmacare Holdings of South Africa for an undisclosed amount. Shelys is a maker and distributor of OTC pharma products in East and Central Africa.




Aureos Capital's East Africa Fund has successfully sold its stake in Shelys Africa Limited to Africa's largest pharmaceutical manufacturer, Aspen Pharmacare Holdings for an undisclosed sum. Aureos Capital is one of the leading private equity fund management companies specialising in investing in small to mid-cap businesses in emerging markets.


As part of the transaction, Aureos sold its shares alongside other shareholders to give Aspen Pharmacare a 60% interest in the Shelys Africa Group.


Shelys Pharmaceuticals, founded in 1984, manufactures and distributes over-the-counter (OTC) medicine and ethical pharmaceutical products throughout East and Central Africa. Aureos initially invested in Shelys in 2003 with a mandate to help the company increase the scale of its operations across the East African region.


To achieve this, in 2003 Aureos assisted Shelys in acquiring Beta Healthcare, the leading local OTC manufacturer in the region. The acquisition delivered Shelys greater product diversity and a much broader geographical reach. Combined revenues in 2007 reached US$38 million.


In late 2007 Aureos introduced the Shelys Group to Aspen Pharmacare, based in South Africa, to explore potential opportunities to work together. Both Managing Directors recognized strong synergies between the two businesses. To Aspen, the Shelys Group offered good manufacturing capabilities and a strong brand presence in the Central and East African regions allowing it to leverage its strengths and increase its reach across Africa. To Shelys, Aspen offers access to a broader distribution network and wider product range.


Comments Shakir Merali, the Aureos Partner responsible for the deal: “We are delighted to have secured Aspen Pharmacare as a strategic partner for the business and we are sure both companies will see robust growth coming from their combined strengths and synergies.”


Adds Davinder Sikand, Aureos East Africa Managing Partner: “Shelys has proved a highly successful investment for our Aureos East Africa Fund and this transaction further illustrates our success in transforming the companies we invest in into regional leaders.”


Shelys Africa Group Chairman, Jayesh Shah, commented that Shelys' tie up with Aspen would create a formidable group in the pharmaceutical sector in the East and Central African region.


Aspen Group CEO, Stephen Saad, stated: “We are delighted to have formed this partnership which is instrumental to achieving our goal of providing quality, affordable medication throughout Africa.”


Aureos will soon achieve the first close of its new US$400 million Africa Fund, which will continue to progress Aureos' goal of investing in and growing the next generation of regional leading companies across Africa.