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US family biz icon launches Africa fund

Dr John Coors, fourth-gen chief executive of ceramics company CoorsTek, is behind the launch of an investment group targeting Africa that plans a new approach to investing in the continent.

Dr John Coors, fourth-gen chief executive of ceramics company CoorsTek and a member of the Coors brewing dynasty, is behind the launch of an investment group targeting Africa that plans a new approach to investing in the continent.

One Thousand & One Voices (1K1V), launched in May in Cape Town, is looking to initially invest $300 million in Sub-Sahara Africa, but plans additional funds for other emerging market regions including Latin America and Eastern Europe. It plans to involve other wealthy families, signing up, among others Charles Widger, founder of Brinker Capital, a Pennsylvania-based investment manager.

“1K1V was established with the belief that the pathway to economic freedom – real prosperity for millions living in poverty – is through values-based private investment grounded in the time-tested principles of free enterprise,” said Coors. 

The group says that it plans to invest with an eye on “patient” capital that will emphasise long-term returns rather than speculative short-term rewards. 1K1V said this approach was designed to address shortcomings of traditional private equity and impact investment funds prevalent today. 

The group added that the “patient” capital approach is one part of its so-called “three dimensional” investment concept. Rather than just injecting their cash, the families involved in 1K1V would be responsible for leveraging their business experience or "intellectual" capital, and their "relational" capital – their connections – on behalf of businesses involved in the scheme. 

“A significant challenge for many families is educating the next generation on investing their money, and 1K1V provides a strong framework for meeting this challenge.” 

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