Arif Naqvi steps back from Dubai-based Abraaj’s fund business

Arif Naqvi will remain CEO of Abraaj Holdings, which he founded in 2002. (Reuters)
Updated 23 February 2018

Arif Naqvi steps back from Dubai-based Abraaj’s fund business

LONDON: Arif Naqvi, founder of Abraaj Holdings, is stepping back from the management of the Dubai-based group’s fund business, according to a statement.

Naqvi “has passed the reins of the fund management entity” to two co-chief executives “in order to further grow the business,” Abraaj said in a statement.

Omar Lodhi and Selcuk Yorgancioglu have been appointed as co-CEOs of the fund management business, Abraaj Investment Management Limited (AIML). They will assume their roles with immediate effect.

Arif Naqvi will remain CEO of Abraaj Holdings, which he founded in 2002.

The move comes as the equity firm seeks to restore confidence after claims it had misused investor funds, according to the Financial Times.

Abraaj on Friday announced broad changes to the firm’s governance and operating model and the appointment of a new leadership team.

Core to the re-organization will be the separation of AIML and Abraaj Holdings (“AHI”), which will be independently managed, it said.

“The fund management business will continue to oversee the operations of all of Abraaj’s funds globally on behalf of leading institutional investors and manage a portfolio of investee businesses across Asia, Africa, Middle East, Turkey and Latin America.”

“Mr. Naqvi will focus on managing Abraaj Holdings and will retain a non-executive role as a member of the Global Investment Committee of AIML.”

Amid the structural changes and an “ongoing review,” Abraaj has decided to “pause its deployment activities temporarily, other than on transactions for which commitments are already final, until the reorganization is complete.”

Naqvi’s move comes after a reported row with investors including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the World Bank’s International Finance Corporation, the UK’s CDC Group and France’s Proparco Group.

Abraaj has denied any wrongdoing in the dispute between the four investors in Abraaj’s health care fund, according to the FT.

US energy secretary meets Saudi counterpart after OPEC cuts

Updated 10 December 2018

US energy secretary meets Saudi counterpart after OPEC cuts

RIYADH: Saudi Arabia’s energy minister held talks Monday with US Energy Secretary Rick Perry, after the Kingdom and its allies defied US pressure to cut oil production in a bid to prop up prices.
They discussed the “state of the oil market” and energy cooperation between the two countries during a meeting in eastern Dhahran city, the minister, Khalid Al-Falih, said on Twitter.
Perry tweeted that he discussed the need for “open, free, and fair markets with the Saudis.”
OPEC members and 10 other oil producing nations, including Russia, on Friday agreed to cut output by 1.2 million barrels a day from January in a bid to reverse recent falls in prices.
The decision came even as US President Donald Trump demanded that the cartel boost output in order to push prices down.
But Al-Falih shrugged off the pressure last week, saying “we don’t need permission from anyone to cut” production.
The US “is not in a position to tell us what to do,” he told reporters ahead of Friday’s OPEC meeting in Vienna.
Last week, for the first time in decades, the United States — which is not a member of OPEC — was a net exporter of crude oil and petroleum products.
It was the latest sign of how the shale boom has lifted the US standing on global petroleum markets, prompting talk of “energy dominance” by Trump.
Perry’s visit to Dhahran came as Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman unveiled state oil giant Aramco’s plan for a new energy megaproject in the area known as the King Salman Energy Park (SPARK).
The energy park is expected to attract an initial investment of $1.6 billion, Aramco said.