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Improved Corporate Governance Required to Help Reduce Risk and Positively Impact Performance for MENA Companies

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, June 4, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- GrowthGate Capital has published for the fourth consecutive year its White Paper on Private Equity in MENA in conjunction with Harvard Business School faculty members (MBA Class of 2013) and under the supervision of Professor Josh Lerner, the Jacob H Schiff professor of Investment Banking at Harvard Business School.

GrowthGate Capital has initiated and contributed to this White Paper as part of its commitment to raising the educational awareness of the Private Equity (PE) industry that benefits a whole community of LPs, GPs, regulators, professionals, advisers, academics and other practitioners interested in this subject.

This year's White Paper which is entitled: "Doing Well While Acting Good" addresses the topic of good corporate governance and its direct correlation to good corporate performance globally, and more specifically, in the context of the MENA region. The study reviews the various stages of development that corporate governance has witnessed and continues to face in the regional legal and corporate frameworks.

Some of the key findings of the White Paper are:

  • A recent urge in MENA to develop corporate governance codes which are now effective in 14 out of 17 countries. Most of these countries are following a voluntary "comply or explain" approach, which is similar to the provisions of the Combined Code in the United Kingdom.
  • Persistent challenges in MENA to implementing corporate governance standards due to: poor understanding of the purpose of corporate governance, misperceptions of the respective roles and responsibilities of boards and management, chronic failures in corporate transparency and accountability; and a 'natural' resistance to change by family-owned businesses who do not easily adhere to new norms of decision-making and continue to rely on legacy frameworks.
  • Serious improvements in MENA with the rise of active and prominent public and private organizations which advocate corporate governance, for example: Standard & Poor's and Hawkamah, who have joined together to create an Environment, Social and Governance index for the Pan-Arab region; and the Pearl Initiative, of which GrowthGate Capital is a member, and that is a pure private sector organization dedicated to promoting, educating, and improving corporate governance standards throughout MENA.
  • Finally, a survey of 12 active PE firms in MENA indicating that corporate governance bears significant importance in their investments. In addition, on a scale from 1 to 5, tangible benefits resulting from good corporate governance were rated 4.75.

The "Doing Well While Acting Good" White Paper is available on www.growthgate.com along with a series of previous White Papers that address similar insightful topics on private equity and that bear the contributions of Harvard Business School faculty members and of Prof. Josh Lerner, considered a world authority on PE in both developed and emerging markets.

About GrowthGate Capital Corporation

GrowthGate Capital Corporation is a private equity company targeting mid-sized businesses in the Middle East and North Africa region. The firm adopts a buy-and-build strategy, directly acquiring sizeable equity stakes in established companies. GrowthGate Capital works closely with management bringing financial, operational and strategic expertise to help drive superior performance. GrowthGate Capital possesses a deep understanding of, and a particular focus on, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Morocco. It partners with talented management teams to help scale their organisations, extend regional and global reach, and further develop their businesses. All the portfolio companies are in the top three of their sector and geography.

GrowthGate Capital has invested in a number of sectors including environmental solutions, visual animation and themed entertainment, transportation, aviation, construction, food distribution and applied technology solutions. GrowthGate Capital actively partners with its portfolio companies to help accelerate growth and build strong relationships based on integrity, vision and trust.

This release can also be viewed online at http://www.pressreleasenetwork.com/newsroom

CONTACT: Media enquiries: Roula Waked Corporate Manager Keystone Equity Partners Email: roulawaked@keystone-ep.com Tel: +971 4 3302220Source:GrowthGate Capital Corporation