CDC Group beats 2020 Africa Investment Conference pledge to invest GBP2bn in Africa

20 Jan 2022

  • CDC Group reaches milestone despite upheaval caused by the pandemic
  • Africa to remain the focus for investment over the next five-year strategy period

London - 20 January 2022 - CDC Group, the UK’s development finance institution, today announced that it had exceeded its 2020 commitment to invest £2 billion in Africa over the last two years.

The company, which is soon to be renamed British International Investment (BII), said it had invested close to £2.2 billion in total in African businesses in 2020 and 2021, despite the unprecedented upheaval caused by the Covid pandemic.

Nick O’Donohoe, Chief Executive of CDC/BII, said: “I am delighted that we exceeded the ambitious target we set at the Africa Investment Summit held in London in 2020. This was during a period when CDC rapidly pivoted to support our portfolio and mitigate the economic fallout of the pandemic in the countries in which we invest. The role of DFIs such as CDC was vital in supporting vulnerable countries that did not have the financial reserves to protect their economies.”

“Moving forward, British International Investment intends to invest between £1.5 and £2 billion per annum between 2022 and 2026 to support the UK government’s Clean Green Initiative and to create productive, sustainable and inclusive economies in Africa, parts of Asia and the Caribbean.”

Last year saw CDC/BII make its largest ever deal in Africa – a partnership with DP World worth up to $1.7 billion – to significantly boost the continent’s ability to trade globally by expanding its port capacity. Other key investments include Liquid Telecom, that is building a pan-African fibre-optic network, and in the Global Partnership for Ethiopia, a consortium led by Vodafone to build a new, world class mobile network in Ethiopia.

Investing in clean infrastructure will be central to BII’s strategy over the next five year period. At least 30 per cent of total investment by value will go into climate finance.

Among the major clean infrastructure investments made in Africa by the company over the last strategy period was a $100 million (£75.5 million) commitment to the Nachtigal Hydro Power in Cameroon, $50 million (£36.8 million) for the Malindi Solar Project in Kenya [which became operational recently] and $50 million (£36.8 million) for ACWA Power in South Africa.

Speaking today at the 2022 Africa Investment Conference, Chris Chijiutomi, Director and Head of Infrastructure Equity, Africa and Pakistan, at CDC/BII, said: “Clean infrastructure investment for British International Investment will go beyond renewables. Clean water provision, forestry and agritech, for example, will become increasingly important moving forward.

We also continue to power Africa’s growth through our investee company Globeleq which last year succeeded in securing 1.4GW of wind and solar projects in South Africa.”

In addition to investing in utility scale projects, BII will prioritise technology-backed Venture Capital opportunities in smaller businesses that have the potential to deliver innovative, local solutions to mitigate the impacts caused by the climate crisis.

- ENDS - 

For more information, please contact:

Andrew Murray-Watson, Head of UK Media

M: +44 7515 695232

About CDC  

1. CDC Group is the UK Government’s impact investor with over 70 years of experience of successfully supporting the sustainable, long-term growth of businesses in Asia and Africa. Under its new five-year strategy its geographical mandate will be expanded to include Indo-Pacific countries and the Caribbean.

2. CDC will become British International Investment plc on 4 April 2022. 

3. The company is a leading player in the fight against climate change and has committed more than £700 million of climate finance over the last four years. It plans to invest over £3 billion in climate finance between 2022 and 2026. 

4. CDC is also a founding member of the 2X challenge which has raised $10bn to empower women’s economic development.   

5. The company has investments in over 1,000 businesses in emerging economies and total assets of £6.9 billion.

6. CDC / British International Investment is wholly owned by the UK Government and is a champion of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. All proceeds from investments are reinvested to improve the lives of millions of people in Asia and Africa. 

7.  CDC’s expertise makes it an ideal partner for private investors looking to devote capital to making a measurable environmental and social impact in countries most in need of investment.  

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