Actis in South Asian fundraising double

The emerging markets private equity investor has raised a combined $475m through two simultaneous fundraising efforts covering India and the South Asia region.

Actis, the London-based emerging markets private equity firm, has capped its India Fund 2 on $325 million (€262 million) after surpassing an initial target of $300 million. It has also reached the target it initially set of $150 million at the final closing of its South Asia Fund 2.

India Fund 2 will provide finance for Indian management buyouts and expansion capital situations in sectors including technology, business process outsourcing, pharmaceuticals, fast-moving consumer goods, financial services and automotive ancillaries.

Half of South Asia Fund 2 will invest in deals originated by India Fund 2, while the other half will invest in opportunities in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Pakistan.

The entrepreneurial and technical talents of South Asian management teams and promoters are beginning to be unleashed in new forms of private equity transactions

Donald Peck, managing partner, Actis

In a statement, Actis said it received LP commitments from a number of “leading investors” in Asia, Europe, the US and the Middle East. Among them were CDC and GIC Special Investments of Singapore. CDC is the emerging markets investment arm of the UK government, from which Actis was spun out last year.

Actis was behind the first private equity-backed privatisation in India in July 2003 when purchasing tractor manufacturer Punjab Tractors for $60 million. In February 2005, it created India’s Avtec to take over the auto components business of Hindustan Motors in an $18 million deal.

Actis has made a total of 35 investments worth over $200 million in the South Asia region since 1988, exiting 18 of them. It has offices in Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Karachi.

In a statement, Actis managing partner Donald Peck said: “Not only does underlying economic growth continue to accelerate [in South Asia], but the entrepreneurial and technical talents of South Asian management teams and promoters are beginning to be unleashed in new forms of private equity transactions, many of them on the buyout model.”