Vantage Capital invests $25m in Aquasantec

20th July 2023 By: Darren Parker - Creamer Media Contributing Editor Online

Large-scale mezzanine debt fund manager Vantage Capital has made a $25-million investment into water tanks, pipes and related products manufacturer and distributor Aquasantec International, which works to address some of the water, sanitation and hygiene needs in East Africa.

Vantage invested into Aquasantec in June in the form of mezzanine debt and ordinary equity, acquiring a controlling shareholding in the group as part of a leveraged management buy-out.

The founding Shah family, diversified Kenyan conglomerate Ramco Group and publicly listed Mauritian conglomerate Terra Mauricia disposed of their shareholding in the group as part of the transaction.

“We see water security as a core priority for the African continent and look forward to supporting a strong management team in achieving their ambitions of delivering innovative water security solutions across the continent,” Vantage Capital associate partner Roshal Ramdenee said.

Aquasantec was founded in Kenya, trading as Kentainers, more than 30 years ago by Chandulal Shah and family. Since then, the business has grown organically, becoming a household name across the region. With the recent addition of a new factory in Nairobi, alongside factories in Uganda, Rwanda and Zambia, the business is poised to continue securing the water needs of East Africa.

Aquasantec’s core product range includes various sizes and types of water storage and supply products including water tanks, underground tanks, drums and pipes. Other products include septic tanks, grain silos and pallets.

The group has a moulding capacity of more than 12 000 t/y and an extrusion capacity of more than 15 000 t/y.

Vantage’s investment will contribute towards improving water security and access to water supply in a region characterised by water scarcity. Access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene aligns with the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal 6 relating to clean water and sanitation.

“Vantage is proud to back a . . . company with such a strong social impact and a management team which has a proven record. We share management’s vision to capitalise on Aquasantec's . . . brands and new factory premises to launch its next phase of growth.” Vantage Capital managing partner Warren van der Merwe said.

“The partnership will help accelerate the pace of growth towards achieving our ambitious growth objectives. We also take this opportunity to thank departing shareholders for their contribution to the growth of the Group to date,” Aquasantec CEO Kalpesh Patel added.