Amethis is pleased to announce the sale of its minority stake in Compagnie de Distribution de Côte d’Ivoire (CDCI) to Groupe Retail Holding, a Moroccan group that holds several modern distribution franchises in Morocco.
Acquired in 2002 by the Ivorian-Lebanese entrepreneur Yasser Ezzedine, CDCI is now the second largest food retailer in Côte d’Ivoire with a network of 150 stores. Thanks to its unique positioning, the Company is present with both the King Cash brand and the CDCI brand and, above all, targets the middle and working classes by leveraging its broad geographical coverage with more than 50% of stores outside Abidjan.
In 2014 the entry of Retail Holding and Amethis into CDCI shareholding enabled the Group to modernize and expand its distribution network with the opening of more than 20 stores across the country. The financial support provided also enabled CDCI to strategically reposition its retail business, rebrand its King Cash brand and renovate its existing stores. Through this partnership, the Company’s infrastructure has been strengthened to anticipate and support its future development.
In September 2019, in line with its initial exit strategy from this investment, Amethis sold its entire stake in CDCI to Retail Holding, which thus became the company’s majority shareholder: “Thanks to the partnership with Amethis and Yasser Ezzedine, we were able to start our expansion in sub-Saharan Africa while pursuing our growth in Morocco. We strongly believe in the development potential of modern distribution in Africa,” said Zouhaïr Bennani, President of Retail Holding Group.
The pioneer of modern distribution in French-speaking West Africa, and founder of Sococé, the first shopping centre, in Abidjan, in 1995, Yasser Ezzedine, states that “Amethis will remain a unique, faithful and sincere partner in its approach to supporting entrepreneurs on the continent. »
Khady Kone-Dicoh, Investment Director at Amethis, adds: “We are proud to have supported a visionary entrepreneur such as Yasser Ezzedine over the past five years and to have accompanied an Ivorian leader in the food retail sector in this decisive phase of its development. We are also pleased to have contributed to the regional integration of a leading Moroccan player. »
“Sub-Saharan Africa is an undeniable growth driver for Morocco, we are pleased to have contributed to the deployment of a Moroccan strategic player in Côte d’Ivoire,” concludes Laurent Demey, Partner at Amethis.
The Compagnie de Distribution de Côte d’Ivoire (CDCI) is a company specialized in the commercialization of consumer products, both food and non-food. CDCI has the largest national distribution coverage with a network of 150 stores across Côte d’Ivoire under the CDCI and King Cash brands. At the end of 2018, CDCI had nearly 2000 employees and generated revenues of around 250 million euros.
Amethis is an investment fund manager dedicated to the African continent, with an investment capacity exceeding €725m. Amethis brings growth capital to promising midcap champions in a diversity of sectors throughout the African continent. As an active shareholder, Amethis offers key support and expertise through its international network, its opportunities of external growth and its value-added governance.
ABOUT RETAIL HOLDING
Founded in 2005, Retail Holding operates the brands of the Label’Vie group, the second largest retailer in Morocco. This major player, with revenues of c. €850 million in 2018, operates in several formats through its three brands Carrefour, Carrefour Market and Atacadao. At the end of 2018, the Label’Vie Group had 92 stores.
Retail Holding is also present in other sectors of the trade with its Virgin, Kiabi and Burger King brands. At the end of 2018, the holding company had more than 10,000 employees and a turnover of nearly €1,260 million.
ABOUT EDMOND DE ROTHSCHILD
Edmond de Rothschild is an ambitious, independent family-run investment house founded in 1953, which specialises in private banking and asset management based on the idea that wealth should be used to create tomorrow’s world. In all its activities, the Group focuses on bold strategies and long-term investments which are rooted in the real economy – infrastructure, healthcare and impact investing. The Group has € 150 billion in assets under management, 2,700 employees and 32 sites worldwide as of 31 December 2018. It is also active in corporate finance, private equity and fund administration.