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|| Bahrain Middle East Bank and partners to launch a $50 million China fund

bmb-orion.jpgOrion Partners, a Hong Kong-based alternative asset management firm announced that it has entered into a partnership with Bahrain Middle East Bank, a Gulf-based investment bank, to act as its sponsor for its new China-focused private equity fund.

The fund aims to target investors from the Gulf Cooperation Council countries. According to the firm, less than 12% of GCC foreign assets are in Asia, and even lesser in China.

Bahrain Middle East Bank is listed in the Middle East Investors Directory with the code BFD58.

More details follows

Orion Partners, a Hong Kong-based alternative asset management firm with over $1.3bn in assets under management, announced that it has entered into a partnership with Bahrain Middle East Bank, a premier Gulf-based investment bank, to act as its sponsor for its new China-focused private equity fund to be formed in collaboration with Orion. The fund aims to target investors from the Gulf Cooperation Council countries.

The new $50m fund will be operated in parallel with the $250m Orion C Growth Fund (C Fund) focusing on three core elements: China, Consumers and "C-Partners" - a strategy of bringing together renowned industry specialists with strong track records in building large and successful consumer businesses in China.

Together with Orion Partners' pipeline of C-Partners, the C Fund will invest in growth businesses in the consumer sector with a goal of building true market leaders. Investments will be focused on businesses tied to China's tremendous growth in sectors such as luxury products, marketing and communications services and branded consumer goods.

Commenting on the new strategic partnership, Akbar Habib, Chief Executive Officer of BMB, said "Orion Partners' principals have successfully launched 16 funds for investments in North Asia since 2000. They offer unparalleled access to the fast-growing Chinese market. This strategic partnership gives us the opportunity to provide our clients a gateway to world's second largest and fastest growing economy."

"Interestingly, even though China will be the world's largest economy by the end of this decade, less than 12% of GCC foreign assets are in Asia, and even lesser in China. Together with Orion, we will help our clients diversify and provide unique access to the consumer sector - the fastest growing segment in China's booming economy. From BMB's perspective, the tie-up broadens our coverage and extends our product slate to include all major global economies," he added.

According to the Institute of International Finance, the total value of foreign assets held by investors from the GCC is projected to rise to $1.9 trillion by the end of 2011 - up sharply from the high of $1.5 trillion in 2008.

TK Chiang, Managing Partner of Orion commented: "Historically, most foreign investments in China have been targeted at heavy industry and light manufacturing. More recently, domestic consumption, at over $2 trillion annually and growing at over 18% per year, has become a critical component of China's emergence as an economic superpower. This is the space we plan to occupy with our new relationship with BMB."



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