Struggling Abraaj Gets 70% of Nigerian Firm by Converting Loan

(Bloomberg) -- Abraaj Group, the private-equity firm that collapsed after defaulting on debt, will get a 70 percent stake in C&I Leasing Plc by converting a $10 million loan into equity in the Nigerian company.

“Abraaj knows that pulling out $10 million will be detrimental to the growth of the business, so rather than cash out, they decided to convert,” C&I Chief Executive Officer Andrew Otike-Odibi said by phone from Lagos. Once done, C&I plans a rights issue or an initial public offering that may dilute Abraaj’s stake to about 30 percent, he said.

Abraaj, once one of the most high-profile private-equity companies in the Middle East until its dramatic failure last year, is being restructured by liquidators in a bid to settle more than $1 billion of its debts through asset sales. The firm’s Lagos office didn’t respond to an email seeking comment.

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