UAE’s Abraaj sells entire stake in Orascom Construction

The company sold its 5.4 per cent stake for about $52m



Embattled private equity firm Abraaj has sold its entire 5.4 per cent stake in Orascom Construction Ltd for about $52m.

The move came after the company crossed a 5 per cent filing threshold on June 6, Abraaj said in statement in Dubai.

Abraaj is facing two lawsuits from creditors over the non-payment of debt.

Read more: Creditor starts legal proceedings for Abraaj restructuring

It has also been trying to stem the fallout from a row with four of its investors, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the International Finance Corp (IFC), over how it used their money in a $1bn healthcare fund.

Abraaj, the Middle East and North Africa’s largest private equity firm, denies any wrongdoing.

Summary findings of a review carried out by Deloitte, which was hired by Abraaj to examine its business, showed that a cash shortage led the firm to “commingle” investor money with its own money, according to a document seen by Reuters.

Abraaj, with debts estimated at over $1bn, met its creditors earlier this month to reach a standstill deal, which the firm said was backed by the vast majority of its lenders, to facilitate the sale of its investment management business to Cerberus.

However the Kuwaiti fund, an unsecured creditor, refused to join secured creditors in the proposed debt freeze agreement.

PIFSS said it would see through “till the end” a petition filed in the Cayman Islands for the liquidation and winding up of Abraaj Holdings after it defaulted on a $100m loan.