Saffar eyes key role in private equity sector
Dubai, April 10, 2009
Saffar, a regional financial services firm, is eyeing a key role in the private equity arena in the Mena region with the appointment of former chief investment manager for Direct Investments of the Kuwait Investment Authority, Dr Adnan Ali Sultan into its fund.
Dr Sultan has been appointed to the Investment Committee of the Saffar Financial Infrastructure Fund.
He brings to Saffar more than 30 years of financial investment, strategic planning and management experience, including leadership positions in academia, asset management and consulting businesses, said a company statement.
As an academic, economist and accomplished investment professional, the appointment of Dr. Sultan further strengthens the Saffar Financial Infrastructure Fund’s proposition of investing in early stage financial services companies in the Mena region.
As a member of the Saffar Financial Infrastructure Fund’s Investment Committee, Dr. Sultan will evaluate deals for the fund. His experience in direct investments in the region will help the fund properly review opportunities and execute on the most promising.” said Mishaal Al-Usaimi, CEO of Saffar.
"There is strong demand for mortgages, insurance, and investment products to serve the region’s needs and limit reliance on external financial institutions," he noted.
Dr. Sultan most recently served as the chairman and managing director of National Technology Enterprises in Kuwait, a company that applied the venture model to its investment strategy.
As a result, Dr. Sultan’s experience in venture investments will be a valuable addition to the Saffar Financial Infrastructure Fund’s Investment Committee, given the fund’s strategy of investing in growth stage financial services businesses in the Mena region.
"Having been involved in private equity for most of my professional career, I have been looking to work with a company that shares my vision of how the business should be managed," said Dr Sultan.
"Saffar is one of the few private equity firms that invest in growth stage businesses. I find their approach to investing unique in the Mena region and am pleased to join their organization.” he noted.
Prior to joining Saffar, Dr. Sultan has held a number of management, board membership and government positions.
He has served as the secretary general for the Higher Committee for Economic Development and Reform as well as the being a member of the Board of the Kuwait Institute for Business and Technology.
Saffar believes that financial services – encompassing banking, insurance, consumer finance, mortgages and asset management among others – is a form of infrastructure just like transport, utilities and water and is therefore critical to economic growth.
The Saffar Financial Infrastructure Fund recently completed its first investment in John Charcol Middle East, a leading independent mortgage broker in the UAE.-TradeArabia News Service