Sabre, Abraaj launch $250m India fund

Dubai’s Abraaj Capital is making its foray into India via the formation of a joint venture with Sabre Capital, an India-based private equity firm to raise a $250m fund.

Middle Eastern and North African private equity firm Abraaj Capital, which is headquartered in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and Sabre Capital, an Indian private equity firm, have announced a joint venture designed to capitalise on investment opportunities in India, Asia’s fourth-largest economy.

Under the deal, the two groups will jointly own a new entity called Sabre Abraaj Capital. The partners intend to raise a $250 million India-specific fund that will take significant minority or majority stakes in local companies, according to a press statement.
Rana Talwar, Sabre’s head and former CEO of Standard Chartered Global, will chair the new fund, while Arif Naqvi, CEO and executive vice-chairman of Abraaj, will oversee the investment committee.

Sabre Abraaj intends to raise the fund in 2006 and start making investments in 2007. The partners hope to tap institutional investors in the Middle East, Europe and Asia.
Naqvi said in the statement: “The UAE’s non-oil trade with India has already touched $8 billion. This JV will further bond the special relationship between the Middle East and India, and create the next step in their mutual economic growth.”
With $1 billion of assets under its management, Abraaj specialises in buyouts, strategic minority stakes in public enterprises and real estate investments within the Middle East-North Africa region.