FILE PHOTO: Dubai International Financial Centre, in Dubai, UAE on January 12, 2019. Chris Worldwide /

Islamic Finance

Dubai regulator slaps $315 mln penalties on collapsed private equity firm Abraaj

The Dubai Financial Services Authority (DFSA) has imposed financial penalties of $315 million on two units of failed private equity firm Abraaj for "deceiving investors and the regulator".

DFSA said in a statement on Tuesday the fines were for “serious wrongdoing by two Abraaj group companies included carrying out unauthorised activities in the DIFC and misusing investors’ monies”.

Abraaj Investment Management Limited (AIML) was fined $299,300,000 and Abraaj Capital Limited (ACL) $15,275,925.

DFSA said it “continues to investigate individuals and entities” connected with the Abraaj case.

Abraaj was the biggest buyout fund in the Middle East and North Africa, managing $14 billion in assets, before it filed for provisional liquidation last year.

In its sixteen years, it managed a mix of conventional and Shariah-compliant funds, and counted the Islamic Development Bank as an investor in the $2 billion Infrastructure and Growth Capital Fund.

Many other Islamic financial institutions also have exposure to Abraaj, including Bahrain’s Ithmaar Bank and UAE’s Noor Bank.

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