$5bn suite of private equity funds to be launched by Dubai World and the Dubai Islamic Bank


In the UAE, the Dubai Islamic Bank and Dubai World have announced the launch of a $5bn family of sector focused private equity funds to participate in strategic transactions on a global basis.

The family of funds to be launched over the next 18 months will consist of seven closely focused private equity funds, covering the strategic sectors of energy, financial institutions, infrastructure, real estate, health and education, general industrials and technology, as well as media and telecommunications.

In a statement, the two organisations said that the aim of their project is to allow investors to participate in highly profitable strategic transactions in the sectors of their choice and would strengthen the UAE and Dubai’s position as the financial hub of the Middle East. Dubai Islamic Bank and Dubai World will be seed investors in each fund while other investors will include LPs from the Middle East.

Mohammad Khalfan Bin Kharbash, the UAE’s minister of state for finance and industry and chairman of Dubai Islamic Bank, said, ‘DIB and Dubai World partnered to launch the family of funds that will reinforce UAE as the financial hub of the GCC and the greater Middle East and provide viable investment opportunities on a global basis to public and private investors. The energy fund will focus on exceptional opportunities generated by growing demand from Asia. The financial institutions fund will actively participate in consolidation opportunities and the growth in demand for Islamic Banking worldwide. The TMT fund will focus on growth opportunities in the Middle East, Asia and Africa where new technologies combined with under-penetrated communications markets provide unique investment opportunities.’

Sultan Ahmed bin Sulayem, executive chairman of Dubai World, commented, ‘This project will raise one of the largest and highest profile family of funds in the world and is a manifestation of Dubai’s position as a leading financial centre. This US $5bn family of private equity funds will be leveraged to complete transactions in excess of US $10bn. These funds will offer institutions and high net worth individuals the rare opportunity to acquire stakes in private companies that operate in some of the most strategic industry sectors globally and will provide a viable alternative to stock market investments.’

Aref Kooheji, CEO of the investment banking group at Dubai Islamic Bank, added, ‘This project is in line with DIB’s Investment Banking Group systematic drive to develop new products in order to meet clients’ needs and adapt to new market development. We believe that our sector-based approach to private equity will generate very attractive returns and provide customized diversification to our investors. It is a sea change from the generalist and regional approach to private equity prevalent in the region to date. It is therefore a differentiated investment proposition to the institutions and high net worth individuals of the UAE and the Gulf region. This initiative is also consistent with our strategy of attracting and retaining the best talents in the global financial community with a view of providing comprehensive investment banking coverage and services in priority to public and private institutions in the UAE and the greater Middle East.’

Dubai World is the holding company of Dubai Ports World, Free Zone Corporation, Nakheel, Istithmar, and the Dubai Multi Commodities Centre.

Dubai Islamic Bank is a UAE-based full service Islamic bank founded in 1975.

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