Gulf Capital exits investment in Tunisian olive oil producer CHO Group

The alternative investment management company manages more than $2.5bn in assets across seven funds and investment vehicles

The CHO Group's products are exported globally to 50 countries. Photo: Gulf Capital
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Gulf Capital, a UAE-based alternative investment manager, has exited its investment in Tunisian olive oil producer CHO Group.

The company, which plans to boost investments in the food security and sustainability sectors, generated an internal rate of return — a measure for return on investment — of 15 per cent through its investment in the CHO Group, it said on Tuesday.

However, Gulf Capital did not give details about the size of its investment in the CHO Group, a fully-integrated producer and one of the largest olive oil exporters in North Africa.

“Our strong focus on food security and sustainability, as well as CHO Group’s market leadership in Tunisia … made the company highly investable with favourable growth prospects,” said Chris Foll, senior managing director for growth capital at Gulf Capital.

“What made the investment even more attractive to Gulf Capital was the strong focus CHO Group placed on sustainable farming … and to eventually become one of the leading global players in the integrated olive oil production sector.”

During the investment period, CHO expanded its production infrastructure and grew its local and global footprint through acquisitions, backward vertical integration and expanded its export markets.

It grew its revenue by about 33 per cent and doubled the number of countries it exports to across North America, Europe, Asia and Africa to 50.

With Gulf Capital's investment, CHO managed to backward integrate more than 3,200 hectares of land, producing olives to be used by its processing centres.

Gulf Capital runs private equity, growth capital and real estate businesses, and sources deals across markets in the Middle East and South-East Asia.

The company has so far made 37 investments in growth markets and manages more than $2.5 billion in assets across seven funds and investment vehicles.

In May last year, Gulf Capital and Dubai-based NBK Capital Partners exited their investments in Jordan’s Classic Fashion Apparel Industry.

In March 2021, the alternative investment manager exited its investment in Middle East and Africa energy services contractor Egyptian Chinese Drilling Company, seven years after the Abu Dhabi-based company made its initial investment in the company.

Updated: October 18, 2022, 10:23 AM