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The Abraaj Group invests in South African FMCG - Liberty Star Consumer Holdings.

The Abraaj Group today announced the acquisition, through its Funds, of a majority stake in Liberty Star Consumer Holdings (Libstar). Abraaj completed the buyout of Libstar from its existing shareholders including Metier, Old Mutual Private Equity, Development Partners International and Lereko.

Established by Metier, Andries van Rensburg and Robin Smith in 2005, Libstar and its subsidiary companies manufacture a broad range of quality private label and own-branded products for the South African food, fast-casual dining, household and personal care markets.

Abraaj will continue with financial and operational support to Libstar's pan-African growth strategy which includes the introduction of new product lines and the upgrade and expansion of existing Libstar plants. Abraaj will continue to support Libstar's successful buy and build strategy across South Africa as well as in Sub-Saharan Africa.

Davinder Sikand, Partner and Head of Sub-Saharan Africa for The Abraaj Group, commented: "The acquisition of Libstar represents another exciting African investment partnership for us. Metier, along with the Libstar management team and employees, has built an impressive market position as one of the leading manufacturers and providers of high-quality products and services to the African foods service and retail industry. We look forward to adding our deep experience in helping accelerate the growth of our numerous FMCG and food businesses, not only across Africa but from our other growth markets as well."

Sandeep Khanna, Managing Director at The Abraaj Group, added: "In partnership with Libstar's management team who have reinvested substantially, we believe we can help transform the company to become a truly pan-African leader in the food and retail services market. The market opportunity for food and other consumer staples in Africa promises huge potential for growth, driven by rapidly changing trends in consumer tastes and demand, as well as ongoing developments within the FMCG industry itself, such as the increased use of private labels."

Thierry Dalais, Executive Chairman of Metier, said: "Libstar's strategy originated in 2005 when we, along with Andries van Rensburg and Robin Smith, articulated an ambition to create and grow Libstar. We have been integrally involved in Libstar's development and today are proud of what has been achieved. As private equity investors there comes a time when we need to pass the baton on and trust that Abraaj will run hard and be worthy owners of the business. We wish them all the very best."

Andries van Rensburg, Chief Executive Officer and Robin Smith, Commercial Director of Libstar, added: "We are very proud of the success Libstar has achieved over the last decade and would like to record our appreciation of the support we have received from our partners, Metier, Development Partners International, Lereko and Old Mutual Private Equity. We are confident of jointly executing on the next phase of our pan-African strategy with Abraaj and look forward to this exciting stage in the company's growth trajectory".

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Publication:CPI Financial
Geographic Code:60SUB
Date:Oct 8, 2014
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