Syntaxis Africa launch ₦12bn Private Equity Fund to Bridge Financing Gap for SMEs in Nigeria

15 Jan 2019

It is common knowledge that Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) play a vital role in the development of any economy. According to the World Bank, SMEs contribute up to 60% of employment opportunities and up to 40% to the national Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Yet, access to funding remains a critical drag on the performance of many of these businesses. The stark reality is this: without access to patient funding, many of these businesses will struggle to stay afloat.

Syntaxis Capital Africa has launched Syntaxis Nigeria Growth Fund, a N12bn  private equity fund to meet the funding needs of SMEs in Nigeria and selected countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. This will cover a variety of sectors including manufacturing, agriprocessing, healthcare, education and non banking financial services.

The fund was launched on Thursday, January 10, 2019 in Abuja at the newly commissioned Wells Carlton Hotel and Luxury Apartments in the presence of key capital market stakeholders including the Acting Director General, Securities and Exchange Commission, Mary Uduk.

Partner and Managing Director, Syntaxis Capital Africa, Adesuwa Okunbo while delivering the keynote address spoke on the differentiating factors of the fund said, “we see the fund as a vehicle for rapid economic growth and development in the countries we invest in. By providing not only access to patient growth capital to SMEs, but also combining that with capacity building and operational expertise, we are giving businesses the ability to scale their activities, which will in turn will increase productivity, create new jobs and generate taxes for the government.

In addition, being one of the few private equity funds led by a Nigerian woman, the fund has a unique focus on investing with a gender lens strategy, using our transformative growth capital to influence and enhance gender equality throughout our portfolio companies, improving the ratio of women in the workforce, board and value chain, which we believe will enhance financial returns for our companies and thus investors, whilst improving the society and economy simultaneously.”

Syntaxis Nigeria Growth Fund is the Sponsor’s naira parallel vehicle makes up approximately 30% of its total fundraise which includes a USD PE vehicle, Syntaxis Capital Africa Fund which will invest on a parallel basis to the naira vehicle. Syntaxis Nigeria Growth Fund has already mobilised capital from the largest pension funds in Nigeria as well as from local private investors and is expecting to complete the fundraise before the end of Q1 2019.

Syntaxis Capital Africa, the Sponsor of the fund has partnered with Syntaxis Capital, an existing private equity fund manager that has successfully managed private equity funds with experienced local teams, having raised up to US$300mn from global institutional investors and deploying successful private equity funds in other emerging markets.

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