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Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund plans to raise as much as $500 million (R8.5 billion) over the next three years to invest in infrastructure projects on the continent.
The EAIF needs the new capital to embark on its next growth phase, said Martijn Proos, director at London- and Johannesburg-listed firm Ninety One, which manages the fund. “We are open to Africa, we are open for business where there are good opportunities,” he said in an interview.
The EAIF was established by Private Infrastructure Development Group in 2001 and substantially funded by the governments of the UK, the Netherlands, Switzerland and Sweden. It provides mainly debt capital and has invested $2.1 billion in over 90 projects on the continent.
In an effort to bolster interest from investors, Proos said the fund this week received its first-ever credit rating, from Moody’s Investors Service -- a foreign currency long-term issuer rating of A2 with a stable outlook.
The fund is banking on increased interest in Africa from investors looking for bigger returns than they can get in Europe and the US.
The fund previously raised $385 million of debt capital in 2018 with insurance giant Allianz Global Investors participating in the round. Other investors include Standard Chartered Bank, the African Development Bank, the German development finance institution KFW, and FMO, the Dutch development bank.
It has an active current loan portfolio of $1.15 billion in projects spread across 17 African countries and infrastructure including power, telecommunication and transportation. Its loans range from a minimum of $10 million to $65 million per project, for as long as 20 years.