KARACHI: The Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) has approved the first private equity and venture capital fund worth $100 million under Private Funds Regulations 2015.

Ijara Capital Partners Ltd, a private equity firm licensed by the SECP in October 2016, has been allowed to undertake private equity and venture capital fund management.

According to the SECP’s document of approval dated April 20, the commission has registered Pakistan Emerging Market Fund-1, which is categorised as a private equity and venture capital fund.

Talking to Dawn, Ijara Group CEO Farrukh Ansari said long-term investment through private equity funds provides people with alternative investment vehicles and stimulates economic growth by attracting capital from local and overseas investors.

It will also help those companies and entrepreneurs who have limited access to capital from banking channels or capital market.

Growth in capital will generate economic activities and add new jobs, ensure capacity building and enhance foreign exchange earnings by increasing exports.

Mr Ansari said the fund is designed to give accredited local and foreign investors easier access to private equity investment opportunities.

He said the fund offers a portfolio of private equity investments in healthcare, infrastructure, real estate, information technology and other high growth sectors.

The fund will have a finite life. It will eventually exit through a secondary market sale or initial public offer (IPO), thus reaping high returns to investors, he said.

Published in Dawn, April 23rd, 2017

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