Press Release

April 24, 2011

Gulf Capital launches operating improvement arm, ExcellenceO2, to drive growth and add value to its private equity investments

Gulf Capital, a leading Middle Eastern Private Equity firm, announced today the launch of its operating improvement arm, ExcellenceO2, to assist it in the operational enhancement and growth of its portfolio companies. 

The initiative is in line with Gulf Capital’s firm belief that active operational enhancement and value addition is the most sustainable way to deliver superior returns to investors in the long-term.  ExcellenceO2 will be run by three senior operating partners, Patrick Buffet, Alfred Farwagi and Nabil Kassem, a highly qualified team with a proven track record of restructurings, turnarounds, operational improvement and profit enhancement.  

Commenting on the launch, Dr Karim El Solh, co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Gulf Capital said: “We are excited about the prospects of working with ExcellenceO2 to enhance operations and drive growth in our portfolio companies.  The ExecellenceO2 partners are amongst the most seasoned and proven industry veterans who have worked regionally and globally at the highest levels in a number of multinational companies.  Their experience and track record in restructuring and optimizing companies and restoring them to profitability and growth will be an important addition to Gulf Capital’s skill set and capabilities.”

Nabil Kassem, Senior Operating Partner at ExcellenceO2 said: “Our strategic partnership with Gulf Capital is a ground-breaking one in the Middle East and is modeled on the best practices in the US and European private equity industry.  As the regional private equity industry matures, the surest way to deliver sustainable and superior returns is to focus intensely on operational enhancement and profit maximization.  The senior operating partners will work collaboratively and closely with the Gulf Capital team to reposition their portfolio companies and accelerate their growth, ahead of an eventual exit.”

Mr. Richard Dallas, Managing Director of Private Equity at Gulf Capital said: “The ExcellenceO2 partnership is an important tool kit available to us to help us screen investments early on and, post-acquisition, to enhance the operations of our portfolio companies.  The inclusion of the ExcellenceO2 partners into our team will add substantial bandwidth, restructuring expertise as well as deep industry knowledge.  Our portfolio companies will only benefit from this new partnership and we hope this will translate into superior returns to our investors in the long-term.”

Nabil Kassem and the Excellence O2 partners will be embedded in the operations of Gulf Capital’s portfolio companies, providing them with significant resources for improving margins and profitability and, ultimately, delivering growth and superior returns.