This transaction represents Vantage Capital’s 27th mezzanine financing transaction on three generations of mezzanine funds, with its mezzanine investment portfolio now spread across nine African countries.
Africa’s largest mezzanine fund manager announced on December 3 that it has granted € 19 million of mezzanine financing to Pétro Ivoire, a leading distributor of oil and gas products in Côte d’Ivoire. The company, which operates a network of 72 service stations across the country (3rd network after Total and Vivo Energy), is also the leading gas distributor in Côte d’Ivoire, with more than 1.7 million gas cylinders in circulation by the end of 2018. It also holds a 40% stake in the capital of SAEPP, the largest unit for storing gas and filling cylinders in Côte d’Ivoire. The company sold 230 million liters of petroleum products in 2017.
This Vantage financing enabled Pétro Ivoire’s founding family to recover a majority stake in the company by facilitating the purchase of shares from two out-of-stock private equity funds, Amethis and the West Africa Emerging Markets Growth Fund. . Founded in 1994 by Mathieu Kadio-Morokro, the company is now run by his son, Sebastien Kadio-Morokro, who has recently been selected by the World Economic Forum as one of the top ten « Young Global Leaders » in Africa. Saharan. The exit of the two private equity funds also allowed a French gas trading company based in France, Geogas Entreprise SAS, to take a stake in the company alongside the founding family.
This transaction represents Vantage Capital’s 27th mezzanine financing transaction on three generations of mezzanine funds, with its mezzanine investment portfolio now spread across nine African countries. Outside South Africa, Vantage will now have invested in ten Mezzanine financing operations for a total amount of $ 138 million in Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, Nigeria, Uganda, Kenya and Mauritius. in Namibia and Botswana. Pétro Ivoire is Vantage’s first investment in French-speaking Africa and the mezzanine fund manager is currently considering several opportunities in Morocco, hoping to announce its first transaction in this country in 2019.
Luc Albinski, Managing Partner at Vantage Capital, explained that « Vantage is proud to have structured the very first buy-out by its leveraged management of Francophone West Africa. Mezzanine financing from Vantage was the ideal solution for Pétro Ivoire’s shareholders: it allowed private equity funds to grow out of the company’s capital and the founding family to acquire a majority stake in its own company. have to pay a huge amount of money. »
For David Kornik, Partner at Vantage Capital, « Pétro Ivoire is led by an experienced and highly skilled management team, which has successfully raised the company among the leading players in the oil and gas distribution sector in Côte d’Ivoire. We look forward to partnering with its members to move the company to a new stage of growth. »
Warren van der Merwe, Managing Partner at Vantage Capital, said: « We are delighted to complete this first transaction in French-speaking Africa. We think that Petro Ivoire is a rare pearl. After receiving support from several private equity funds over the last decade, the founding family is now able to regain control of the company. Its new strategic alliance with the major gas trading company Geogas Entreprise SAS bodes well for the future of Petro Ivoire. »
Sébastien Kadio-Morokro added: « Our vision is to be one of the largest African oil and gas distribution companies. With Vantage Capital as a financial partner, we intend to consolidate our leading position in this sector in Côte d’Ivoire and implement our regional expansion. »
Jean-Thomas Lopez, Portfolio Manager at Amethis, said, « Amethis is proud to have supported the founding family for the past five years, in which we have created value together by doubling the size of the network – including the acquisition of Essenci network in 2014 – and significantly improving access to gas for Ivorian families. This helps fight deforestation by reducing the use of charcoal.
Vantage has been advised in the legal field by Clifford Chance (Morocco) and Cabinet Chauveau (Ivory Coast). Carlara International (France), CMS Francis Lefebvre (France) and Emire Partners (Ivory Coast) acted as legal counsel for Geogas Entreprise SAS, Amethis & West Africa’s Emerging Markets Growth Fund and Pétro Ivoire. Dentons (Morocco) provided tax advice. KPMG (France) and Ernst & Young (Ivory Coast) provided financial advice, OnPoint Africa (Côte d’Ivoire) business advice and Marsh (France) insurance advice. Ibis Consulting (South Africa) conducted the Environmental Impact Assessment.