Aiming Global Expansion, Bahrain’s Investcorp Enters India, Saudi Arabia

With the fastest growing population in the world, India comes across as the best place for furthering expansion for Bahrain based investment firm, Investcorp.

Being one of the leading European investor, Investcorp has announced its plans to grow business in the India market to $1.5 billion in assets under management over the next five years. The news comes as the firm plans to double its global AUM to $50 billion by stepping new geographies and new lines of business.

Investcorp entered the Indian market by acquiring the private equity and real estate investment businesses of IDFC Alternatives. As of now, the Bahrain based firm has $28 billion worth assets under management. Speaking about the planned investments in India, Mohammed Mahfoodh Al Ardhi, the Chief Executive of Investcorp, said, “Our vision for the firm is that we want to be a respected global investment firm in the alternatives space.”

He added, “Any gaps we have in the alternative space; we want to fill them. So, we didn’t have an infrastructure business, we started an infrastructure business. We were not in India; we are now in India. We weren’t in China; we are now in China. In the US, we started there four decades ago and now we want to go deeper into that economy.”

Investcorp has invested in many companies in India, namely, the spice maker Integrow, the online fashion retailer Bewakoof.com, home rental startup Zolo and Citykart Retail. By making investments in India, the firm plans to tap the country’s consumption growth story and its enablers.

Keeping in line with its global expansion agendas, Investcorp is going to invest at least 50 percent of its $1 billion GCC Infrastructure fund in Saudi Arabia. Co-Chief Executive Officer Hazem Ben-Gacem stated that they will focus on healthcare, education, social housing, roads, utilities, and infrastructure.

Speaking to Reuters, he clarified that the remaining fund will be spent in other parts of the GCC or wider MENA region. The future projects of the Investcorp include ports in Oman, utilities in the UAE and road infrastructure in Bahrain.

Investcorp has been able to find attractive investments, manage them and exit them in the past too. Another PE-MENA fund worth $400 million, which will invest in private firms of the MENA region, will be launched soon.

Investcorp has also extended partnership with a Hong Kong based alternative investment firm, China Everbright Limited. The two firms have combined their investment teams in the Chinese technology sector.

The new committee set up by the two will jointly handle the China Everbright New Economy Fund I. Also, the two are exploring opportunities to set up a successor private equity fund to access the technology sector of China.

The planned investments of Investcorp has helped the firm maintain a stronghold in the finance market as the shares of the firm have delivered a 106 percent return since October 2018.

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