Citadel Capital Named emeaFinance's "Best Private Equity House in Africa"

The award is Citadel Capital's second prominent award win in as many months, highlighting the firm's success in 2008 despite the global economic downturn. In January, Citadel Capital won Acquisitions Monthly’s MENA Private Equity House of the Year for 2008.

Citadel Capital, the Arab world’s leading private equity firm, has been named Best Private Equity House in Africa by emeafinance, the emerging Europe, Middle East and Africa finance magazine.

The award is Citadel Capital’s second prominent award win in as many months, highlighting the firm’s success in 2008 despite the global economic downturn. In January of this year, Acquisitions Monthly, the international buy-out magazine, named Citadel Capital its MENA Private Equity House of the Year for 2008. The Acquisitions Monthly Awards are widely acknowledged as among the most prestigious designations in the international financial services industry.

“It’s great to be named Africa’s Best Private Equity Firm” said Ahmed Heikal, Chairman and Founder of Citadel Capital. “This recognition — coming at a time when the private equity industry is facing global challenges — is a great endorsement of the effectiveness of our control investment strategy, our team and the attractiveness of the frontier markets in MENA where we have chosen to focus.”

The nod comes as Citadel Capital expands operations across its core North African footprint. The firm also has plans to open offices in South Sudan and Ethiopia.

Commenting on the firm’s success in 2008, Heikal noted, “We decided in the fall of 2007 to slow new investment activity and focus instead on growing our existing Platform Companies. As a result we feel our portfolio is in a good shape to weather the downturn and take advantage of opportunities that will surely present themselves in the months ahead.”

In addition to completing six bolt-on acquisitions in 2008, Citadel Capital also completed a US$ 45 million partial exit of its controlling stake in ASCOM Geology and Mining, a regional geological mining and services company. Also last year, the firm raised over US$ 350 million of equity and five-year term debt at the general partner level.

Since 2004, Citadel Capital has generated more cash from exits than any other private equity investor in the Middle East and North Africa region. From all its transactions to date, Citadel Capital has returned US$ 2.2 billion in cash to its investors (3.0x+ invested capital).

Citadel Capital remains one of only a handful of private equity general partners worldwide to make significant investments in its own transactions. Having raised significant amounts of capital in 2008, the firm is well-positioned for what will likely be great vintage years for private equity investing in 2009 and 2010.

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Citadel Capital is the leading private equity firm focusing on building regional platform investments throughout the Middle East and Africa in selected industries through acquisitions, turnarounds, and greenfields executed via Opportunity Specific Funds. Citadel Capital’s 19 OSFs now control Platform Companies with investments worth more than US$ 8.3 billion in 14 industries, including mining, cement, transportation, food and energy. Since 2004, the firm has returned more than US$ 2.2 billion in cash to investors, more than any other private equity firm in the region.

For more information, please contact:

Ms. Ghada Hammouda
Head of Corporate Communications,
Citadel Capital (S.A.E.)

Tel: +20 2 2791-4440 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting              +20 2 2791-4440      end_of_the_skype_highlighting • Fax: +20 22 791-4448
Mobile: +20 16 662-0002