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Zabeel Investments revealed as second Sony buyer

Dubai private equity firm co-investor in recent acquisition of Sony stake.

Zabeel Investments was a co-investor in the recent acquisition of an undisclosed but “significant” stake in Japanese electronics giant Sony alongside Dubai International Capital (DIC), ArabianBusiness.com can reveal.

The Dubai-based private-equity player told ArabianBusiness.com that it had invested an undisclosed amount in the Sony Corporation in conjunction with the Global Strategic Equities Fund (GSEF). GSEF’s general partner, NewDawn GSE Asset Management, is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Dubai International Capital Asset Management (DICAM).

This is the second time Zabeel Investments has partnered with GSEF to invest internationally, the first being the 3.12% stake in European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company (EADS).

In March this year Zabeel Investments announced that it was investing in GSEF with the intention of the fund being used to invest in Fortune 500 companies. HE Mohammed Ali Al Hashimi, executive chairman of Zabeel Investments, said that Sony’s brand equity was among the “strongest in the world”.

“The company’s innovation and diversification of offering fit well within our portfolio, while this co-investment opportunity with GSEF is evidence of a strong future partnership,” he said.

“We will continue to seek out opportunities where we can strategically partner on investments and equity acquisitions, particularly in companies with proven track records or those which provide a tactical advantage. While there are a host of local and regional investment prospects, there is still a wealth of international opportunities in the market,” he added.

Zabeel Investments has embarked on a host of projects during 2007, including a strategic 12% equity stake in Emaar Industries & Investments (EII). At the start of the year the company announced it had taken a stake in regional private equity leader Abraaj Capital, as well as stakes in interior design contractor Depa United Group and the Madaares initiative, a private joint stock company from National Bonds launched to raise educational standards in the UAE.

Located at Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC), Zabeel Investments is focused on the areas of commercial real estate development and management, private equity and asset management. The company also has interests in hospitality, finance, media and education. Its development projects include the Tiara Residence on Palm Jumeirah, the Tiara United Towers on Sheikh Zayed Road and America Hotels & Resorts in Tatweer’s Bawadi entertainment themed development.