Investec Asset Management, through its Africa Private Equity capability, has completed the management buy-out of 100% of SJL Group. SJL is the market-leading transport and logistics operator providing fully integrated cross-border services through the Morocco-EU corridor, as well as in Tunisia and domestically in Morocco.
The deal will see Investec Asset Management, together with co-investors DEG (Deutsche Investitions-und Entwicklungsgesellschaft mbH) and Avanz Capital, partner with SJL’s experienced senior management team led by Group CEO Mohamed Didouch with the aim of supporting the company’s profitable growth as it expands its service offerings, client base and geographical footprint. New capital will also be invested to accelerate a number of growth initiatives in SJL’s logistics capability and transport fleets.
Headquartered in Tangier, where SJL has extensive logistics and warehousing facilities, SJL also has operations in Tunisia, Spain and France, through which the business serves clients linking North Africa and Europe. The firm has built a diverse base of leading multinational and domestic clients across key export sectors for Morocco, including automotive, textiles and agriculture, as well as domestic services in FMCG. As the market leader in crossings between Morocco and the EU, SJL is well positioned to benefit from the burgeoning investment from multinationals into key manufacturing sectors in Morocco.
Gerben Dijkstra, Investment Principal at IAM commented: “The buyout of SJL represents our first Private Equity investment in Morocco, which we see as a very attractive market. In acquiring a market leader, with a high quality service offering comparable to global operators and led by an experienced management team, we are very excited about the opportunities for it to capitalise on the rapidly growing manufacturing sectors in Morocco and become a true regional leader.”
Group CEO Mohamed Didouch: “We believe that SJL has huge growth potential in supporting clients and in helping to facilitate the development of Morocco as a major manufacturing and logistics base for Europe. Our partnership with Investec Asset Management will enable enhanced growth and development of the business.”
Investec Asset Management established an African private equity capability almost a decade ago with the objective of supporting the creation of local and regional champions in their respective industries. The private equity team forms part of Investec Asset Management’s growing Africa Private Markets platform, which has evolved to cover unlisted credit and infrastructure, including the developmental Emerging Africa Infrastructure Fund.