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Top three considerations for private equity in the Middle East

We spend a lot of time thinking about what the biggest stories in the wider sphere of private equity in the Middle East will be. And we structure the SuperReturn Middle East agenda around them.

Here are three of the biggest themes that we think will shape private equity in the Middle East this year and beyond:

Big story #1:
Exploration and establishment of new, alternative models of private equity

Blind pool funds has resulted in disappointing investment performance for LPs in the past. Now, we are seeing more consideration for SPV/SPEs, investment on a deal-by-deal basis and alternative structures such as holding companies.

Given current market conditions, LPs are looking for greater discretion and to diversify the geographic and sector focus of their investments, while still appreciating the deal sourcing, execution and value-add skills that private equity managers have. How can parties work together to come to the most beneficial model for all parties, in a low-oil environment?

Just some of the names debating these topics at the conference include Global Investment House, ReAya Holding Company, SEDCO Capital, Qinvest, BlackRock PEP and more.

Private Equity Middle East

Big story #2:
The rise of tech as a disruptor and new investment thesis

With high internet penetration and a young population, the Middle East (particularly the UAE) is a region ripe for the rise of tech and the innovation economy.

We are now seeing more ‘traditional’ private equity funds target growth-stage investments in ‘new economy’ companies and thanks partly to government initiatives in Dubai and Abu Dhabi pushing for greater entrepreneurship and innovation, venture capital is beginning to become a very interesting proposition.

"Venture capital is beginning to become a very interesting proposition."

Tech is positioned to not only facilitate new investment opportunities, but to also provide the opportunity for private equity investors to accelerate the growth of their portfolio companies.

Don’t miss these experts on what you need to know about tech and disruption in the Middle East:

•    Erwan Colder, Partner, Middle East Private Equity Leader, PwC
•    Noor Sweid, Chief Investment Officer, DH Holdings
•    Walid Hanna, Founding Partner & CEO, MEVP

Big story #3:
Filling the SME funding gap: private debt and structured capital in the mid markets

With private debt providing benefits to both LPs and companies, there has been an increase in recent years in managers raising funds to fill the bank funding gap.

But how real is that gap?

How different is the private debt model in MENA that we are used to seeing in Europe and the USA? And is this really the right funding solution for companies and founders?

Hear from Walid Cherif, Senior Managing Director at industry-leading Gulf Capital on the benefits of this product for both the investors and the companies in the Middle East.

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