Best private equity house: Arcapita
Arcapita’s success is in acknowledgment of the impressive variety of its transactions. By December 2006, a transaction value of more than $18 billion had been reached, with investments across a selection of corporate, real estate, asset-backed, and venture capital lines of business. Over 2006 Arcapita’s balance sheet grew to $2.8 billion, with shareholders receiving strong returns.
The firm operates out of London, Atlanta and Bahrain and offers a range of products, including Shariah-compliant instruments to investors across the Middle East. Impressive projects include its joint venture with a Bahrain investment group for the $2.5 billion Bahrain Bay Development and the $4.2 billion acquisition of Viridian, the Northern Ireland based electricity utility. Viridian was Arcapita’s largest single investment and offered the group an attractive combination of reliable earnings and potential capital growth.
Among Arcapita’s products is a $200 million venture capital fund that it launched in October 2006. This has invested a total of $21.5 million so far in three transactions: digital services provider Alloptic, energy company Prenova and medical devices company Cardiomens.