Former Carlyle Exec Chigwende’s $250-mn Africa Fund Gets Anchor LPs

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Admaius Capital Partners, a new private equity firm floated by Marlon Chigwende, has roped in anchor Limited Partner (LP) commitments for its maiden fund.

Chigwende was co-head of Carlyle’s Sub-Saharan Africa buyout advisory team and left the firm four years ago to float a private equity firm along with a former KKR executive.

Qatar Investment Authority (QIA) and Rwanda Social Security Board (RSSB) have come as anchor LPs for the fund named Virunga Africa Fund I, which aims to raise $250 million.

“Virunga Africa Fund I affirms our belief that international investors are increasingly seeing the huge opportunities Africa offers,” said Regis Rugemanshuro, director general of the RSSB.

“The fund will unlock tremendous value and deliver real development impact benefitting people across the continent – at a time when economies are trying to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic.”

The fund will be domiciled in the Kigali International Financial Centre (KIFC) and its head office will be in Kigali.

Chigwende was hoping to be second time lucky with Admaius. He has already assembled a small team, including executives who have worked at Abraaj, Duet Africa Private Equity, Ninety One, QInvest and I&M Bank among others.

The firm’s top team comprises three managing directors. Besides Chegwende, the firm has roped in former Abraaj executives Amine Allam and Davinder Sikand as managing directors.

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Allam was part of the investment team of the Abraaj North Africa Fund, and had short stints at QInvest, Ninety One and Ethos Private Equity before moving to Admaius.

Sikand was a top team member at emerging markets PE firm Aureos before it was acquired by Abraaj. He later served a few years in the combined firm before Abraaj was hit by corporate governance lapses.

Admaius has also brought in Maty Ndiaye as head of Francophone West Africa. Ndiaye started her career as a research analyst at Goldman Sachs. She later had a short stint at Kingdom Zephyr Africa Management before joining as managing director at Duet Africa Private Equity. She sits on the board of a PepsiCo bottler in Ivory Coast and is currently a chairperson at that company. Ndiaye joined Admaius last month.

The PE firm also roped in Anita Umulisa as chief financial officer from I&M Bank. Umulisa had started her career at Deloitte and spent the last 15 years at I&M Bank.

Admaius also counts Tunis-based Selim Ettriqui as a vice president. Ettriqui is also a former Abraaj executive who was working with RMBV Impact for the last two years.

Virunga Africa Fund I will invest in high-impact sectors including digital infrastructure, financial services, fast-moving consumer goods, healthcare and education.
– Capital Quest

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