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Cordiant Selected to co-Manage the C$200 Million Canada Investment Fund for Africa.

A public-private partnership for investment in the high growth markets of Africa

MONTREAL, May 11, 2004 – Cordiant and Actis today announced that they have been selected to manage the C$200 million Canada Investment Fund for Africa (CIFA). The two fund managers will be responsible for the development, structuring, and management of the Fund which will invest in risk capital for private investments across the African continent. The fund is comprised of a C$100 million subscription from Canada, through the Canada Fund for Africa, and a minimum of C$100 million to be raised from third parties.

The Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC) managed, on behalf of the Canadian Government, the competitive selection process for a fund manager for CIFA. Cordiant and Actis were chosen to manage the Fund from an extensive list of interested international candidates.

“We believe the Fund will demonstrate real benefits of collaboration between public and private sectors and bring long term self-sustaining economic prosperity to the African continent,” said David Creighton, President and Chief Executive Officer of Cordiant. “The Government’s decision to become a catalyst for such a fund affirms its role as a proactive member of the G8 and the fact that it has chosen our partnership to manage the Fund is an indication of its commitment and belief in our capabilities in managing private sector investments in the emerging markets.”

Paul Fletcher, Chief Executive of Actis, commented “Actis is delivering on its mandate to stimulate third party capital flows into some of the poorest countries in the world. Actis has been chosen for its investment experience, extensive presence across Africa and strong investment team, a team that can lay claim to being the leading risk capital manager in Africa.”

The Fund, first announced at the G8 Summit in June 2002 as part of the $500 million Canada Fund for Africa, which was established to enhance Canada’s commitment to the G8 Africa Action Plan and the New Partnership for Africa’s Development, or NEPAD. It is fully supported by Prime Minister Paul Martin who, most recently through his position as co-Chair of the UN Commission on Private Sector and Development, is a long-time advocate for developing nations. The objective of the Fund is to spur economic growth by providing risk capital for private investments in Africa in a commercially viable and self-sustaining manner.

Cordiant is a portfolio manager headquartered in Montreal, Quebec. The Company specializes in international private sector investments with emphasis in emerging and high growth markets. In 2001 it raised US$360 million for the launch of IFPT, a Trust that offers Canadian pension and endowment funds access to a floating rate return through carefully selected project finance loans in emerging markets that enjoy the World Bank’s Preferred Creditor Status.

Actis, an independent private equity investor which recently demerged from CDC Capital Partners of the UK, has been a financial investor in emerging markets for over fifty years. Its mandate is to make private sector investments in support of sustainable businesses which operate to the highest socially responsible standards in developing countries around the world.

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For further information:
Lori Trotter
Cordiant
Suite 2400
1010 Sherbrooke Street West
Montreal, QC, H3Y 2R7
(514) 286-2631
ltrotter@cordiantcap.com