Aliph Capital's maiden fund completes first investment in Abu Dhabi

Aliph Fund I completes a 100% buyout of the UAE’s largest pet business – The Pet Shop


A Staff Reporter

Published: Thu 17 Nov 2022, 2:57 PM

Last updated: Thu 17 Nov 2022, 7:47 PM

Aliph Capital, a GCC centric private equity firm founded by Huda Al Lawati, announces that its maiden fund, Aliph Fund I (LP), has closed its first transaction; a 100 per cent buyout of the UAE’s largest omnichannel pet business, The Pet Shop (“TPS”), comprising The PetShop, and Petsville.

The business operates retail stores, the leading regional pet products ecommerce site and pet services including boarding, daycare, training, relocation and grooming.

In addition to the buyout, Aliph Capital is injecting significant growth capital into TPS to expand its presence across the UAE and the region and consolidate its leading position in the pet space, with TPS expected to enter other fragmented GCC markets including KSA and Qatar.

As part of the takeover, Amr Hazem – the founder of Petsville – will assume the position of Chief Executive Officer of TPS, to lead business development and expansion. Amr has a formidable track record across both corporate and entrepreneurial roles within the pet care, FMCG and retail segments, having worked at Americana, BRF and Fonterra and having established Petsville in 2019 which has grown threefold since 2020.

Investment strategy

The transaction is in line with Aliph Capital’s strategy of investing in high quality midsized GCC companies and accelerating their operational and digital transformation expansion plans.

Farah Al Mazrui, Head of Investments at Aliph Capital, said: “We are delighted to announce the first investment for Aliph Capital’s maiden fund, which is a perfect example of our strategy of taking active positions in midmarket growth stars. The Pet Shop is a proven leader in a market ripe for consolidation, growth and further tech enablement, and we look forward to assisting the company in its ambitious expansion plans.”

Amr Hazem, Chief Executive Officer of The Pet Shop, commented: “I am very excited to join The Pet Shop as Chief Executive Officer. I see tremendous growth potential in the business and look forward to working closely with Aliph Capital to achieve it.”

The $361 million (2020) UAE pet care market is the largest market in the GCC, and is forecast to experience strong future growth. - Supplied photo
The $361 million (2020) UAE pet care market is the largest market in the GCC, and is forecast to experience strong future growth. - Supplied photo

The $361 million (2020) UAE pet care market is the largest market in the GCC, and is forecast to experience strong future growth, with an anticipated compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9-11 per cent, driven by growth in pet ownership; a young population with a growing expat component; changing local mindsets towards pet ownership and consumers waiting longer to start families. The wider GCC pet market is largely unpenetrated and highly fragmented making the region ripe for investment and consolidation.

Founded in 2011, TPS is the UAE’s one stop shop for pet owners offering a wide range of products and services, including daycare, boarding, grooming, and aquatics maintenance. TPS benefits from multiple customer touch points across its retail, e-commerce, and services channels.

TPS was acquired from Kasamar Holdings ("Kasamar") - a single family office investing in regional private equity, global real estate and public securities with long-term value creation and growth.

Mo Bissiso, Director at Kasamar Holdings, said: “We believe the industry has tremendous potential for continued growth and are delighted to pass the baton to Aliph to continue the expansion in the region."

More news from Business