13/02/2018 12:14 AST

Diversified investment company, Dubai Investments PJSC has announced $20 million direct investment into Africa Crest Education Holdings [ACE]—an investment company promoting quality education across the African continent.

The investment will fund development of SABIS-operated schools in Africa, with an initial target pipeline of projects in Kenya, Egypt, South Africa, Uganda and Morocco. Dubai Investments subsidiary Al Mal Capital advised DIC on its investment in ACE. Al Mal Capital will also continue to manage the investment in ACE on DIC’s behalf. Investbridge Capital arranged and advised on behalf of Africa Crest Education.

“Dubai Investments is pleased to partner with ACE and SABIS on this project. This is part of the Company’s continued efforts to boost its investments in the education sector and making a foray into the African continent. SABIS has a long-standing history of offering quality schooling and is a respected name in global education landscape and this partnership will go a long way in opening school doors to millions across Africa,” said Khalid Bin Kalban, Managing Director and CEO of Dubai Investments.

Dubai Investments will join founding investors Investbridge Capital (IBC), an independent alternative asset management and advisory firm based in Dubai International Financial Centre; Centum—a leading East Africa’s Investment Company listed on Nairobi and Uganda Securities Exchanges; and SABIS, a 130+ years’ global school operator educating over 70,000 students across five continents in the project.

“Africa Crest Education with its strong ties to SABIS is looking at expanding its school network across the African continent. With a young and growing population, the demand for private education in Africa is increasing, and we are glad that Dubai Investments decided to join ACE making a positive impact through the delivery of a top notch educational system. The upcoming period is auspicious for ACE’s growth; as we benefit from DI’s deep experience and exposure to real estate investments,” said Johnny Harb, the CEO of ACE.

The initial project in Kenya, The SABIS International School—Runda, is currently under construction and now accepting applications for its opening in September 2018. The school will be located on a 80, 000 square-metre campus within Runda neighbourhood in Nairobi providing outstanding, non-selective, co-educational English-medium education serving local and international communities.

“Having Dubai Investments join the Founding Shareholders is a welcomed event and one we believe adds great value to ACE. Dubai Investments is the largest listed diversified investment company listed on the Dubai Financial Market with a market cap of c.$3 billion. Their investment in ACE confirms that strong and robust business execution strategies in the education sector, based on the fundamentals, matched with deeply experienced partners and a well-structured project pipeline will attract the very best institutional investor base,” said Mark DeSario, Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Investbridge Capital and Board member of ACE.


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