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Darby Private Equity takes majority stake in Puerto Rico’s Acrecent Financial

14 Jan 2014

Darby Private Equity, the private equity arm of Franklin Templeton Investments, has invested in Latin American commercial finance company Acrecent Financial Corporation for a majority control position.

The investment was made via the firm’s Darby ProBanco Fund II, which specialises in the financial sector in Latin America. To date it has made five investments: a Latin America-wide regional investment, two regional investments in Central America, and two country-specific investments, in Mexico and the Dominican Republic, respectively.

Having started operations in Puerto Rico in 2003, Acrecent expanded to other countries in the Caribbean. Darby’s investment will allow Acrecent to expand further into Central America, offering medium-size businesses, in particular, a new specialised financing alternative, the firm said.

Roberto Velarde, Darby’s managing director for Latin America Private Equity, said, “This transaction represents another example of Darby’s experience and capabilities in supporting middle-market companies with long-term growth capital in the region. Darby looks forward to working actively with the company to implement its strategic plans.”

Darby Private Equity was founded in 1994 by The Nicholas Brady, who served as US Secretary of the Treasury between 1988 and 1993. Richard Frank joined the firm as CEO in 1997 after his career at the International Finance Corporation IFC/World Bank. In 2003, Darby became a fully owned subsidiary of global investment management firm Franklin Resources.

Most recently the firm completed an investment in Uruguayan healthcare product supplier Grupo Bioerix through its second Latin American Mezzanine Fund.

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