(Aureos) August 12, 2010 – Aureos Capital Limited’s Emerge Central America Growth Fund (EMERGE) has acquired a 29.5% stake in Desarrollos Culturales Costarricenses (DCC), a publisher and bookstore company based in Costa Rica.
The EMERGE fund is managed by Aureos Central America Managers Limited, which is a subsidiary of Aureos Capital Limited (“Aureos”), a leading private equity fund management company specialising in investing in small to mid-cap businesses in emerging markets. This is the eighth investment for the EMERGE fund.
DCC owns two chains of bookstores, Libreria Internacional and LibroMax, and a publishing house, Jadine. Libreria Internacional opened its first store in 1995 and is now Costa Rica’s leading chain with 12 stores across the country, plus a 100,000-member strong book club. In addition, LibroMax has three additional stores all situated in shopping malls.
Aureos explains that in the last 15 years Libreria Internacional has been credited with changing attitudes to reading across Costa Rica, through the launch of innovative promotional events for book releases and regular reading events for both adults and children.
According to Aureos, Libreria’s emphasis on high quality customer service, fully trained knowledgeable staff, combined with its stock of an extensive variety of books aimed at all age groups gives them a competitive edge.
DCC also holds exclusive distribution rights with a number of publishers across Central America and Aureos explains that when combined with the investment by EMERGE, will provide a strong platform for expansion to other Latin American countries.
Hans Venier, DCC’s President, comments: “We are hugely excited about this investment by EMERGE, and the prospect of working in partnership with them to expand the concept of Desarrollos Culturales outside of Costa Rica. We believe the time is now right to grow our unique business model into other promising markets.”
“It is fitting that on the eve of our fifteenth anniversary, our long-held ambition of offering the chance to enjoy a wide range of top quality books and CDs across Latin America will take another major step towards being realised.”
José Ulate, the Aureos Partner in Costa Rica responsible for advising EMERGE, says: “Libreria Internacional has revolutionized Costa Rica’s book market, having launched a number of high quality bookstores, and through their promotional activities have gone a long way towards changing attitudes in the country to reading.”
“In its 15 years it has become the undisputed leader in Costa Rica’s book publishing market, with a very strong brand that is recognised across the country. Backed by EMERGE’s capital and know-how, we believe this successful business is ready to be introduced to the rest of Central America.”
About Aureos Capital Limited
Aureos Capital Limited is a private equity fund management company which specialises in providing expansion and buy-out capital to unlisted mid-cap businesses across Asia, Africa and Latin America.
Since its establishment in 2001, Aureos has increased its funds under management to over US$ 1.2 billion and extended its geographical footprint to over 50 emerging markets covering Asia, Africa and Latin America, by establishing 16 regional private equity funds.
Investors in Aureos funds include institutional investors, bilateral and multilateral development finance institutions, pension funds, sovereign wealth funds, fund of funds, family offices and foundations and high net worth individuals.