Middle East funds approach US private equity group

16 November 2007

A number of Middle East sovereign wealth funds have approached Colony Capital, a US private equity company, to discuss taking a strategic stake in the company.

Thomas Barrack, chairman and chief executive of Colony, declined to name the sovereign wealth funds that have approached it, but says “We have been approached by some of them and, depending on who and when and why, it is an interesting concept.”
Barrack says a deal with a sovereign wealth fund could give Colony “a deep-pocketed, well-heeled institutional investor” without the private equity house having to forfeit control.
In September, Mubadala Development Company, a sovereign wealth fund in Abu Dhabi, agreed to buy a 7.5 per cent stake in Carlyle, another US-based private equity company.
Colony’s investments include stakes in gambling company Kerzner International and the Taghazout development in Morocco which includes seven hotels.

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