Bridging the Gap between Private Equity Industry and Africa’s Pension Funds

Oct 14, 2014

The 9th African Development Forum (ADF IX) was held in Marrakech, Morocco, from 12th – 16th October on the theme Innovative Financing for Africa’s Transformation.

Marrakech (October 14, 2014) - The 9th African Development Forum (ADF IX) was held in Marrakech, Morocco, from 12th - 16th October on the theme Innovative Financing for Africa's Transformation. African leaders, including the President of Côte d'Ivoire, Alassane Ouattara, President of Senegal, Macky Sall, and the Prime Minister of Cape Verde, José Maria Neves joined the Executive Secretary of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA), Dr Carlos Lopes and the Prime Minister of Morocco, Abdelilah Benkirane in officially opening the ADF, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa's flagship event. Making Finance Work for Africa (MFW4A) participated in a panel discussion on pension funds, tapping Africa's unused wealth. The panel included Gail Mwamba, Editor, Private Equity Africa Magazine, Ladell Robbins, Vice-President, African Capital Alliance, Nigeria, and David Ashiagbor of MFW4A. The discussions focused on the MFW4A's recently released report "Pension Funds and Private Equity: Unlocking Africa's Potential", which highlights the growth in pension assets under management across Africa. Presenting the report, David Ashiagbor, said, "The growth of African pension fund industries opens up opportunities to fund the long term investment in local businesses, infrastructure projects and services desperately needed for Africa's continued transformation". Ladell Robbins said, "As private equity fund managers, we seek to do our best for our investors, which includes the members of the pension funds who invest in our funds. This helps those members fund their retirement".
For her part, Gail Mwamba called for increased dialogue between policymakers, pension funds, regulators and fund managers to unlock the vast amounts of domestic capital available for long-term finance in Africa. Africa's Pension Funds and Private Equity are Uniquely Aligned to Unlock Continent's Potential
According to a report by the Commonwealth, MFW4A, EMPEA, and supported by The Abraaj Group, African pension funds can play a critical role in the region's private equity industry by mobilising an estimated US$29 billion. Recent reforms in many African countries have created private pension systems, which are rapidly accumulating assets under management (AUM). Private Equity offers these pension funds and their contributors an opportunity to access the growth being generated by unlisted companies across the continent, and with it an outperformance potential that is uncorrelated to other assets, as well as the chance to contribute capital to spur private sector development in their respective countries. Media contact and knowledge management: MFW4A Secretariat. Tel +225 20 26 39 53/