IFC, the French Development institution Proparco, the German development finance institution (DEG) and the U.S. International Development Finance Corporation (DFC) recently finalised a joint financing package for Aspen Pharmacare Holdings Limited and certain of its subsidiaries (Aspen Group) in the amount of €600 million (around ZAR 10 billion).

The financing package for the Aspen Group came as governments across the region called on the international community to assist in bolstering the continent’s vaccine supply chain. IFC has noted that this transaction is the largest investment and mobilisation in the healthcare sector the organisation has led globally to date. The South African-headquartered pharmaceutical company is playing a leading role in producing COVID-19 vaccine treatments and therapies for use across Africa.

A Banking and Finance team from Baker McKenzie in South Africa, led by Partner Lodewyk Meyer, and supported by Senior Associate Chantel van Zyl and associates Penjani Mseteka and Lara Stockley, advised the Aspen Group on this transaction, which was finalised in August 2021. The team from Baker McKenzie advised the Aspen Group in relation to a common terms agreement, a term loan facility with each lender and a group guarantee. The transaction was cross-border in nature, involving Aspen Group entities in South Africa, Mauritius and Australia, and development finance institutions from France, Germany and the United States of America.

The €600 million long-term financing package was mobilised by IFC, the private sector arm of the World Bank Group. It included €200 million from IFC’s own account, €156 million from Proparco, a subsidiary of Agence Française de Développement (AFD Group), €144 million arranged by the DEG, and €100 million from the DFC.

Baker McKenzie Partner Lodewyk Meyer notes that the Aspen Group is significantly contributing to the objective of formulating and filling a material quantity of Africa’s COVID-19 vaccination needs from its production site located in Gqeberha, South Africa.

“We are proud to advise the Aspen Group on this transaction,” he adds.

Click here to view the announcement made by the DFIs.
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