By Dipo Olowookere
An Africa-focused healthcare private equity fund currently, Rx Healthcare Fund, has announced having GE Healthcare as its anchor limited partner.
GE Healthcare is a leading global provider of transformational medical technologies and services, and its proposed minority investment in Rx is subject to completion of fundraising.
This announcement followed an earlier commitment to Rx by the African Development Bank AfDB).
Rx, which is led by former Egyptian Minister of Health, Dr Hatem El Gabaly, is a private equity fund managed by a newly setup fund manager in partnership with EFG Hermes, the leading financial services corporation in the Middle East and North Africa.
It aims to address growing demand for high-quality healthcare services across North African and Sub-Saharan jurisdictions, through investments in high growth potential entities in three key sectors: specialized hospitals, medical diagnostics, and pharmaceuticals.
“Access to long term development funding is the cornerstone of sustainable healthcare development in Africa”, said Farid Fezoua, President & CEO of GE Healthcare Africa. “As Africa’s banks and financial services industry sharpen their focus on the continent’s expanding health sector, nurturing homegrown strategic funding and financing solutions combined with operators’ and technology domain expertise has the potential to provide a significant boost for local private sector healthcare providers, SMEs and entrepreneurs as well as public-private partnerships.”
“We’re delighted to have completed our lineup of potential anchor limited partners with GE Healthcare, an unrivaled industry specialist with a footprint in more than 100 countries across the world, and African Development Bank, the continent’s leading development finance institution,” said Dr. El Gabaly. “Importantly, GE Healthcare’s added value to Rx goes far beyond its financial investment: We view GE Healthcare and AfDB as strategic partners who would bring deep industry and geography specific knowledge in many of our target markets. We believe our Fund will offer a unique value proposition to the potential investors, in which it will be supported by veteran healthcare professionals, seasoned private equity professionals, and experienced investors.”
“Africa’s healthcare sector is unique in that it offers both the potential for superior risk-adjusted returns as well as the opportunity to invest responsibly in a critical sector that will have measurable impact on the wider economy,” El Gabaly noted.
With the IMF projecting the continent’s GDP growing at 6% (2013-2017) and a population of over one billion that includes an emerging middle class that has grown 60%+ to reach c.313 million over the last 10 years, Africa has a strong macro-economic outlook that could create a significant role for private healthcare providers.
Within Africa, Rx will focus its strategy to invest in opportunities across Kenya, Nigeria and Ethiopia in sub-Saharan Africa as well as in Egypt, Tunisia and Morocco in North Africa.
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