Samena Capital acquires 30.6% stake in RAK Ceramics

Samena Capital, an investment firm with assets under management of around $700 million, has completed its acquisition of 30.6 per cent stake in RAK Ceramics PSC, the world’s-biggest ceramic producer, for an undisclosed amount, the company said in a release.

The acquisition was made through Samena Capital’s subsidiary Samena Limestone Holdings and its consortium of international investors including two Gulf sovereign wealth funds. The shares were acquired from the ruling family of Ras Al Khaimah, who will continue to maintain a significant holding in the business.

Under the deal, Samena Capital has acquired 250 million shares, representing 30.6 per cent equity stake. The PE firm will be represented on the board of RAK Ceramics.

Established in 1989, UAE-based RAK Ceramics is a $1 billion global firm which offers a product portfolio comprising over 8,000 designs in ceramic tiles besides bathware. The firm has production facilities in India, Bangladesh, China, Sudan and Iran besides UAE and supplies to over 160 countries. It has annual output of 117 million sq.m. of tiles, 4.6 million pieces of bathware and 24 million pieces of tableware.

"Samena Capital brings a value-added network in our core markets as well as international private equity expertise and business and financial capabilities to our company. We believe that this will add immense value to the organisation by sharpening our company’s long-term business strategy, driving further growth and improving our overall productivity," said Sheikh Mohammed Bin Saud Al Qasimi, crown prince of Ras Al Khaimah, and the chairman of RAK Ceramics.

The firm started its operations in India in 2007 and currently it has an annual sales turnover of Rs 800 crore with production capacity of around 10 million sq.m. of tiles per annum. The company has recently invested in expanding its sanitaryware production in India.

"RAK Ceramics stands apart as a home-grown brand that has become a dominant global player within its industry and is a true success of private entrepreneurship from the Arab world," said Shirish Saraf, founder & vice chairman, Samena Capital.

Samena Capital, which is an alternative assets manager focused on South Asia and MENA market, has so far invested small sums in around a dozen firms in India, including Jubilant Industries Ltd, Dynamatic Technologies Ltd and Voltamp Transformers Ltd. Last year, it was leading a consortium to invest in Reliance Globalcom.

In February this year, it acquired 7 per cent stake in Mahindra Two Wheelers from Kinetics Engineering for $29 million.

Samena has presence across three primary investment strategies: private equity, credit and hedge fund seeding.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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