Dubai, UAE: April 3, 2018
NBK Capital Partners and Gulf Capital have partnered for the first time to make a strategic investment in Jordan’s Classic Fashion Apparel Industry Ltd. Co., one of the biggest private sector employers in Jordan with over 24,000 employees. The investment will enable Classic Fashion Apparel to enter the next stage of its development, accelerating the expansion of production facilities.
Founded in 2003, Classic Fashion Apparel has achieved significant growth and is now a recognised global industry player, with an annual turnover of over US$ 450 million. The company has longstanding relationships with global retail giants such as Walmart, Under Armour, Adidas, American Eagle, JC Penney, Hanes and GAP. Producing over 60 million apparel pieces annually and accounting for a 27% share of Jordan’s apparel exports, the company is making a considerable contribution to Jordan’s economy.
Yaser Moustafa, Senior Managing Director at NBK Capital Partners, an alternative investment firm that advises on providing flexible growth capital to mid-sized companies in the Middle East, North Africa and Turkey, said: “We are delighted to be making our first investment in Jordan with a company that not only has an impressive growth story, but whose commitment to excellence has earned it the trust of some of the world’s most popular brands. Its highly experienced executive team has built a world-class operation, and we are excited to be partnering with Gulf Capital to support Classic Fashion Apparel’s next chapter.”
Walid Cherif, Senior Managing Director and head of the private debt business at Gulf Capital, one of the largest and most active alternative asset managers in the Middle East, added: “This investment highlights the robust market conditions for flexible capital in the MENA region. The strength of Classic Fashion Apparel’s business – and both Gulf Capital and NBK Capital Partners’ track record of deploying capital into industry-leading companies – highlights our commitment to generating superior opportunities and returns for investors.”
K.S. Sanal Kumar, Chairman and Managing Director, Classic Fashion Apparel Industry, said: “We launched 15 years ago with 300 staff and 130 machines and our annual turnover was just US$2m. It gives me great pride that we now have a thriving workforce manning 10,000 machines and, through our partnership with regional institutional investors NBK Capital Partners and Gulf Capital, we are now in a position to enter the next phase of our long-term growth trajectory.” Ithmar Invest acted as financial advisor and arranger to Classic Fashion Apparel Industry.
The deal marks the fourth investment for the US$160m NBK Capital Partners Mezzanine Fund II that is now more than 50% deployed. Headquartered at Dubai International Financial Centre, NBK Capital Partners has advised on investments of over US$1 billion and has a track record of 17 realizations from 30 investments, the highest number of profitable exits by an alternative investments firm in the region over the past decade.
The investment is the 13th for Gulf Capital’s Private Debt funds and the fifth investment for its Gulf Credit Opportunities Fund II, with nearly 50% of the fund invested across defensive sectors across the Middle East and Africa region.