Sunday, 17 December 2017

Convergence Partners to accelerate African ICT development

CPCIF
Friday 29 November 13

Specialist African investment management firm, Convergence Partners, today launched the Convergence Partners Communications Infrastructure Fund (CPCIF), the only infrastructure fund that is dedicated purely to the information and communications technology (ICT) sector in Africa. With a first closing of $145 million, it is one of the largest African infrastructure funds, notwithstanding its single sector focus…

Specialist African investment management firm, Convergence Partners, today launched the Convergence Partners Communications Infrastructure Fund (CPCIF), the only infrastructure fund that is dedicated purely to the information and communications technology (ICT) sector in Africa. With a first closing of $145 million, it is one of the largest African infrastructure funds, notwithstanding its single sector focus.

“Based on World Bank data, we estimate that there is an ICT infrastructure deficit of $20 billion a year in Africa. The evolution of the ICT landscape, with its increasing focus on shared, open access models, provides significant investment opportunity for a specialised infrastructure fund,” comments Andile Ngcaba, Chairman of Convergence Partners. “As a business, we benefit from on-the-ground presence, as well as deep knowledge of the ICT sector and the operating and regulatory environments in Africa. This means that CPCIF has access to high quality investment opportunities which we are well positioned to add value to and risk manage, in order to generate returns superior to general PE market performance.”

CPCIF, which has a targeted final close of $250 million, aims to invest in communications infrastructure and related services and technologies across sub-Saharan Africa. It expects to generate significant returns for investors, while also enabling ICT-driven socio-economic development. CPCIF reached its first close with capital commitments from the following investors: Convergence Partners (as sponsors), the International Finance Corporation (IFC), the European Investment Bank (EIB), the Dutch Development Bank (FMO), the Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) and the CDC Group (CDC).

According to a recent McKinsey report, increased use of the Internet in Africa could result in a contribution of $300 billion a year to the continent’s gross domestic product (GDP) by 2025. However, the infrastructure to deliver these services remains significantly underdeveloped. The upgrading, management and ownership of existing and new infrastructure by specialist owners with private capital provides the investment opportunity for CPCIF to achieve its financial and developmental goals.

Convergence Partners has a proven track record in sourcing, developing, managing and exiting successful investments in its chosen sector in Africa. The team managing the fund is led by Andile Ngcaba, Chairman, and Brandon Doyle, Chief Executive Officer, supported by executives with skills and experience across all facets of ICT investing.
Ngcaba concludes, “As an impact investor, Convergence Partners is dedicated to catalysing investment capital to accelerate communications access and ICT infrastructure development on the continent. We focus on initiatives that increase the availability of communications, broadband services and new technology offerings to the people of Africa. The launch of this Fund will enable us to achieve these objectives on a greater scale.”


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