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Vantage Capital Provides $12.5 Million to Purple Capital

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Africa’s largest mezzanine fund manager Vantage Capital says that it has provided $12.5 million of funding to Nigerian real estate and financial services group Purple Capital.

Purple Capital is the developer of the iconic 6,000m² Maryland Mall (MarylandMallng.com), a neighbourhood shopping centre in the Ikeja district of Lagos.

The newly opened Maryland Mall offers one-of-a-kind experiences for adults and children, with over 35,000 visitors experiencing the mall’s varied attractions each week. Entertainment options include one of the only skating rinks in Lagos, a vibrant food court, restaurants and over fifty retail shops. The centre is home to leading multinational and local brands including Shoprite, Miniso, Uber, Genesis Cinemas, Stanbic IBTC and The Place. Maryland Mall is located on Ikorodu Road, one of the busiest thoroughfares in Lagos, and entices passers-by with one of the largest LED visual display screens in West Africa.

Purple Capital is headquartered in Lagos and has built a high-quality property portfolio, including upmarket residential estates in the Lekki suburb of Lagos.

Vantage is currently investing over fifty million dollars from its third-generation mezzanine fund in real-estate projects across Sub-Saharan Africa.

Warren van der Merwe, Chief Operating Officer of Vantage Capital, said, “The Purple team epitomizes the best of Nigeria’s entrepreneurial spirit with its ability to navigate a demanding operating environment to create market-leading developments. Maryland Mall is one such development, a uniquely inviting family destination for Lagosians of all ages.”

Johnny Jones, Associate Partner at Vantage Capital, added, “Vantage is currently investing over fifty million dollars from its third-generation mezzanine fund in real-estate projects across Sub-Saharan Africa. We have reviewed over fifty real-estate opportunities since we launched our latest mezzanine fund but have only selected four to support. We are impressed with the Purple team’s cost-effective execution and believe their business is an excellent fit for our investment style.”

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Agboola, Managing Partner of Purple added, “’We are excited about Vantage Capital’s partnership with Purple on this refinancing and investment transaction which helps us reset, consolidate and gear up for exciting opportunities in the future. It also provides a seal of approval and increased possibilities for growth across our focus areas of financial services and real estate development.”

Obinna Onunkwo

Obinna Onunkwo, Managing Partner of Purple also added, “Our focus on good corporate governance, high-quality deal origination and execution was a strong attraction for Vantage Capital as an offshore investor. Their investment acts as an enabler to our long-term growth strategy in Africa’s largest economy.”

The Purple investment is Vantage Capital’s sixth transaction in Fund III, a $280 million (R4 billion) fund, with a 55% allocation to countries outside South Africa. Purple Capital represents the 24th transaction executed by Vantage across three generations of mezzanine funds with aggregate capital deployed to date of $277 million (R4 billion).

Vantage was advised by Adepetun Caxton-Martins Agbor and Segun, one of Nigeria’s top commercial law firms known for its finance and cross-border Mergers and Acquisitions expertise, and Werksmans a leading South African corporate and commercial law firm. Purple Capital was advised by Bloomfield Law Practice, a ‘practical and hands-on’ Nigerian law firm with expertise in corporate commercial, private equity, real estate and financing matters.

Purple Capital was established in 2013 as a specialist investment firm with business areas in financial services and real estate. Purple’s focus is on building sustainable long-term relationships based on trust and consistent performance. Strong emphasis is placed on proper corporate governance and best practices. Over the past four years, Purple has made significant investments in the Real Estate and Financial Services sectors, including the development and finance of Maryland Mall, a Grade-A Retail Mall in Lagos, Redworth Terraces and Bishopsgate Residences, which are premium residential developments as well as Purplemoney Micro Finance Bank.

Vantage Capital Group was established in 2001 and currently manages assets of $775 million (R11 billion) in five distinct mezzanine debt and renewable energy debt funds. Vantage has offices in Johannesburg and Cape Town and targets mezzanine debt opportunities of between $5-30 million across more than a dozen key African markets. To date, Vantage has invested in 17 transactions in South Africa, two each in Ghana and Nigeria as well as opportunities in Namibia, Uganda and Botswana. Mezzanine is an intermediate form of risk capital, which is situated between senior debt, the least risky tranche of the capital structure, and equity, the most risky. It combines elements of both debt and equity thereby providing companies with long-term funding on terms which are less dilutive to shareholders than pure equity.

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