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Bahrain’s Investcorp plans three Saudi deals this year

TruKKer launched their Bahrain service in November last year
TruKKer launched its Bahrain service in November last year
  • Asset manager eyes prospects for Saudi Pre-IPO Growth Fund
  • First deal is $51m investment in freight company TruKKer Holding

Investcorp plans to pump millions into at least three companies by the end of this year under its Saudi Pre-IPO Growth Fund, a senior executive has told AGBI.

The first of the three planned deals is with TruKKer Holding, a Riyadh-based digital freight company often referred to as “the Uber of lorries” in the Middle East.

Investcorp, the Middle East’s biggest alternative asset manager, announced last week that it had provided $51 million of the $100 million fundraising by TruKKer.

Its Saudi Pre-IPO Growth Fund was launched in November last year to invest in firms planning an initial public offering in the coming years. It will run for the next three years.

The fund “has raised $200 million and the idea is to get to $500 million before the end of the year,” said Walid Majdalani, head of private equity Middle East, North Africa and Southeast Asia at Investcorp.

Majdalani predicted that two more deals could be closed by the end of 2022.

“From a capital deployment perspective, TruKKer is the first transaction from that fund… We’re looking to close the next transaction in the coming weeks, and there could be a third one which we’re working on right now,” he told AGBI.

Established in 2016, TruKKer is a logitech company that connects shippers and carriers using a cloud-based platform. The startup is aiming to use the funding from Investcorp to expand its operations in the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and other neighbouring countries.

Majdalani said TruKKer was likely to launch its IPO within the next four years.

“If all the stars are aligned, not only in the company, but talking macros, it’s two years. If you assume some headwinds along the way on a macro level, probably four years, but no longer than that,” he said.

Saudi Arabia is the most likely destination for the IPO, but Majdalani did not rule out a possible dual listing. “That is something which is yet to be discussed,” he said.

Investcorp opened its office in Riyadh in 2008 and to date it has made eight investments in the kingdom, in sectors such as healthcare, consumer, manufacturing, transport and logistics, and industrial services. 

It has listed four Saudi businesses on Tadawul, generating over $40 billion in potential demands from their respective pre-listing marketing exercises at that time. 

Listings so far have included grocery retailer BinDawood Holdings, car rental firm Theeb Rent A Car, fitness club chain Leejam Sports Company, and gold jewelry designer and manufacturer L’azurde.

Although domiciled in Bahrain, Investcorp has 13 offices across the US, Europe, GCC and Asia, including India, China and Singapore. As of June 30, it has $42.7 billion in total assets under management.

Executive chairman Mohammed Alardhi told Bloomberg Television last year he aimed to grow the company into a $100 billion firm over the next few years.

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