FFA teams up with IFC to launch $100 million fund. Mezzanine fund to invest in infrastructure projects

FFA teams up with IFC
to launch $100 million fund
Mezzanine fund to invest in infrastructure projects
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FFA Private Bank (FFA) said it plans to launch a mezzanine fund with a targeted capital of $100 million to invest in infrastructure projects in Lebanon, the Levant region, and Africa.

For this purpose, FFA has signed a memorandum of understanding with the IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, which will help it set up and operate the fund.

Mireille Korab Abi Nasr, Head of Communication at the FFA group, said the IFC will participate in roadshows to promote the fund and in the organization of fundraising rounds. The IFC will provide its seal of approval as well as referrals to investors, she said.

The fund, which will be targeting investment funds and high net worth individual investors, will raise capital from Lebanon, the Gulf region and international markets such as London and New York, according to Korab.

She said that they have chosen the mezzanine financing niche because it is underserved in the region. The mezzanine tranche in an infrastructure project usually represents around ten percent of its overall financing package. Mezzanine financing is a subordinated debt. Its claims to the assets of the borrower come before equity but after senior debt.

Bank Audi has shown interest in subscribing to the fund, Korab said.

Since 1971, IFC has invested more than $850 million to support the local private sector with a focus on the financial market, and on expanding financial inclusion for small, medium and microbusinesses. It has also been involved in extending trade financing and promoting sustainable energy and energy efficiency projects.
Reported by Shikrallah Nakhoul
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Date Posted: Mar 01, 2019