Long ignored by global business players, the MENA region abounds with highly lucrative investment opportunities — if you know where to find them. Citadel Capital carefully selects opportunities that allow it to create value through its expertise in corporate re-engineering: creating operational efficiencies, expanding core activities and disposing of un-needed, under-utilized or mature assets.
Regional vision is key to Citadel’s value-creation strategy, which takes local companies and grows them to leverage economies of scale while opening up investment opportunities for them in other markets.
Citadel’s unique vision and regional expertise as well as its iron-clad reputation for integrity have attracted a diverse pool of high-net-worth and institutional investors who appreciate that the firm co-invests alongside its investors in every transaction to share in both risks and returns.
Citadel’s acquisition targets fall into three broad categories:
>Healthy Companies with little debt that lend themselves to leveraged buyouts and have strong growth potential at the local or regional levels. Often, these companies can serve as platforms for further industry consolidation.
>Distressed Companies often have attractive underlying assets that permit the application of financial and management re-engineering to unlock value in turnaround scenarios.
>The firm may acquire smaller companies to consolidate them into a single powerful player able to serve as a platform within its industry both nationally and regionally.
The firm’s primary focus will always be on creating value for its investors, but Citadel takes a special approach to the companies in which it invests, to their employees and to the economies in which it does business. Employee incentive programs — including employee stock ownership and stock options — are the norm at Citadel-owned companies. Where others might be tempted to strip assets, Citadel invests across the region with both greenfield projects and substantial capital injections.
The team’s unique arsenal of skills supports a substantial appetite for calculated risk in sectors including oil and gas, mining, building materials, fertilizers, services and infrastructure. In a few short years, Citadel has executed some of the largest and most compelling M&A deals in MENA business history.
With each acquisition, Citadel looks to create value and opportunities by turning local companies into large regional players. This strategy has paid off handsomely for investors in the Egyptian Fertilizer Company (its Egyptian capacity doubled in two years while it also acquired a controlling stake in a Nigerian plant and was shortlisted to build another in Algeria) and ASEC Cement (which has increased its capacity in Egypt while building plants in Syria and Algeria).
The firm aims to create maximum shareholder value over the medium term before exiting in a timely manner to realize gains for its investors. Investment horizons typically range from 18 months to 5 years, while the firm’s footprint spans the Middle East and North Africa.
Citadel Capital’s preference is for transactions with an equity component of US$ 100 million or more. Citadel typically commits a minimum of 10% of the equity being invested, with the balance placed with an investor base that includes leading high-net-worth individuals and institutions in Egypt and the Gulf.