Joliba Capital reaches first close for West and Central Africa fund

The fund will target investment opportunities across Francophone countries in Western and Central Africa to develop small and mid-cap regional champions seeking growth capital and operating expertise.

Joliba Capital is pleased to announce the first close of its inaugural fund, Joliba Capital Fund I, at EUR 55 million. The fund has secured capital commitments from its anchor investors Proparco (a subsidiary of Agence Française de Développement Group), International Finance Corporation (a member of the World Bank Group), and FMO (the Dutch Entrepreneurial Development Bank). FMO has provided EUR 15 mln in financing through the MASSIF and Building Prospects Funds (respectively EUR 10 mln and EUR 5 mln).


Joliba Capital is an African private equity firm majority-owned by LBO France, a multi-specialist and multi-country investment platform, and co-founded with two seasoned African investment professionals Hamada Touré (Managing Partner) and Yann Pambou (CEO & Managing Partner) The team has grown to 5 people coming from various African countries and bringing along solid private equity and value creation experiences across the target region. This multicultural team has been fully supported since its inception by LBO France who has dedicated part of its human and financial resources to such strategy and has also committed a significant amount in the Fund. In particular, Joliba Capital can rely on LBO France +30 years’ investment in Small and Midcap companies, its operating team and its expertise in ESG.

This initiative has also been supported by one of the anchors investors Proparco, who has been instrumental from day one, to further catalyze the African private equity industry.
The Fund will principally target investment opportunities across Francophone countries in Western and Central Africa to develop a diversified portfolio composed of small and mid-cap regional champions seeking growth capital and operating expertise in a wide range of consumer driven sectors including agribusiness, manufacturing, FMCG, education, healthcare, financial services, and logistics. Companies in the Francophone countries of these regions have historically been served by less developed private equity markets than their Anglophone counterparts.
Joliba Capital will put value creation at the center of the strategy, with the objective of generating superior returns while systematically deploying environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) strategies to maximize impact, promote gender diversity and ensure sustainable growth across portfolio companies.

Robert Daussun, Chairman of LBO France and Stéphanie Casciola, CEO of LBO France state: “As a leading multi-sectorial and multi country investment platform, identifying areas with high growth potential is at the heart of LBO France's strategy. Because Africa is so close to Europe, we have been reinforcing our position in this region by targeting the most dynamic sectors and supporting the most inventive entrepreneurs. We took early this year a majority position in CGF Bourse, a brokerage firm and asset management company based in Dakar and we are also supporting another initiative Seedstars Africa Venture. Our commitment to Joliba Capital aims to strengthen our pivotal role in contributing to promote and achieve the ambitious development of Africa by unlocking value through our hands-on approach in investment and value creation alongside with a strong ESG ambition.”

The founders of Joliba Capital, Hamada Touré and Yann Pambou state: “We are very proud of this achievement and excited to finally support African SMEs with innovative financial solutions and bridge the financing gap in Francophone West and Central Africa. We would like to thank our partner LBO France and our investors Proparco, FMO, and IFC for their trust. We look forward to welcoming more commitments from DFIs and institutional investors as we are moving towards our final close.”

Damien Braud, Head of Private Equity Africa & Middle East at Proparco stated: “We're thrilled to have been able to support Joliba Capital from the very outset with LBO France, and to have IFC and FMO alongside us again. The fund will finance sustainable and inclusive businesses in francophone Africa which is fully aligned with our 2023-2027 Strategy “Acting together for greater impact”. We are proud of Joliba Capital's commitment to jointly generate good and sustainable returns and implement ESG best practices to maximize impact notably through the promotion of gender diversity. We are also very pleased to see LBO France, a top tier French GP support a initiative towards the Africa continent as we hope it will be the first one of many.”

“Through funds like Joliba and our SME Ventures program, we are helping SMEs – most of them family-owned – improve margins, build brands, and create jobs,” said William Sonneborn, IFC's Global Director for Disruptive Technologies, Creative Industries, and Funds. “In many cases, especially in countries with nascent private equity ecosystems, IFC is helping create markets as our investments help attract other LPs with similar interest to create new sources of equity financing for SMEs.”

Christian Roelofse, Manager Private Equity at FMO: “In Joliba Capital we have found a partner that shares our mission to “enable entrepreneurs to increase inclusive and sustainable prosperity.” In collaboration with Joliba, and with continued support from LBO France, we expect to promote SDG5 (gender equality), SDG8 (decent work and economic growth) and SDG 10 (reduced inequalities). These objectives are aligned with the mandates of both MASSIF and Building Prospects, the two Dutch government funds which both contribute to this investment (EUR 10 million and EUR 5 million respectively).”

Source: FMO