QIB, QInvest and Silver Leaf Capital to establish $1bn private equity fund and company in Qatar

QIB, the leading Islamic Bank in Qatar and QInvest, the Islamic investment bank operating from QFC and Silver Leaf capital (SLC) have signed in London on 5th February 2008, a Memorandum of Understanding to establish the Dhow Gulf opportunities fund, the first large -scale private equity fund in Qatar.

  • United Arab Emirates: 20 minutes ago

The fund will be managed by Doha-based Dhow Investors Advisor (DIA), a company jointly owned by QInvest and SLC. DIA will operate from QFC.The fund will be structured in line with the international private equity industry standards and will be Shariah-compliant.

QIB who initiated the project will be the Anchor investor and will act as the lead distribution agent in Qatar and senior distribution agent outside Qatar using QIB’s affiliates in United Kingdom, Lebanon and Malaysia.

The objective of the fund is to attract foreign investors to the region in general and Qatar in particular. The fund targeted sectors will vary from telecom to environmental recycling technologies, media, Oil & Gas and infrastructure. The first closing of the fund is set for end June 2008. A separate international Shari’a compliant private equity fund will be launched in due course with international partners

Commenting on the MOU, QIB CEO, Mr. Salah Jaidah said: ‘The interest of QIB on the private equity market was an initiative driven by our Chairman Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Bin jabr Al Thani. Under the guidance of the board of QIB, we did initiate this project about 6 months ago. Today we are delighted to see this project taking place and this reinforces QIB pioneer role in sharia compliant banking industry. This is the first large scale ever private equity fund in Qatar. Our objective is to invest in diverse sectors that will allow technology migration and transfer of know – how to Qatar and we already have in the pipeline about $300m of investment opportunities that DIA is evaluating. The private equity will contribute in the strong potentiality of growth of local companies in Qatar.’

Pr Abdulatif Almeer, CEO QInvest mentioned on this occasion. ‘The opportunities within the private equity are tremendous and this is the right time for DIA establishment. We are confident in the future particularly that we were able to attract to Doha and partner with a team, to handle DIA and the fund, of high caliber experts on the private equity with a combined experience of more than 50 years in private equity and excellent network of contact in the finance arena globally.’

In fact part of the DIA team will be Mr. Jeffery D’Souza and Mr. Vincent Keith, both founding partners of SLC. Mr. Jeffrey D’souza has a long experience in private equity and has worked for Deutsche Bank in their global market division while Mr. Vincent Keith brings with him strong background from the various positions he held at ABN Amro, Deutsche bank and Goldman Sachs.

Commenting on the MOU Vincent Keith, Founding partner of SLC said ‘The partnership with solid and expert entities like QInvest and QIB combined with our know-how will bring a new era for private equity in Qatar and the GCC. We have ambitious objectives and looking forward to be in the top 5 of MENASA (Middle East, North Africa, South Asia) private equity funds.

The fund will have an advisory board including high prominent Qatari business people as well as international business people. The chairman of the advisory board will be nominated by QIB & QInvest. The fund will have a management board that includes senior DIA team members and QIB representatives. QIB and QInvest will also designate members of the investment committee in consultation with DIA.

The fund will also offer an opportunity for QIB for financing and developing its cross selling activities. Jean Marc Riegel General Manager investment banking & development group commented on this ‘Apart from being the anchor investor, QIB has agreed to partner with SLC in structuring and financing the investments within the fund. This opens major opportunities for corporate financing. In fact via the fund new companies will be established in Qatar and will need financing for their start up period. QIB will play a major role in structuring these financing and QIB affiliates will be actively involved in the distribution of the fund and in providing financial services to the newly established companies.’

This initiative from QIB, QInvest and DIA is subject to QCB and QFC regulatory approvals.


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