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Darby Backs Logistics and Cargo Operator in Ecuador

3 December 2012

(PEHub) December 3, 2012 – Darby Private Equity, the private equity arm of Franklin Templeton Investments, announced that Darby Latin American Mezzanine Fund II, L.P. (“DLAMF II”) completed an investment in Tabacarcen S.A. Tababela Cargo Center (“Tabacarcen”), the logistics and cargo operator at the new Mariscal Sucre airport in Quito, Ecuador. Transaction details were not disclosed.

Tabacarcen signed, with Corporacion Quiport S.A. (“Quiport”), a 20 year contract to build and operate the logistics and cargo center at the new airport being constructed in Quito, Ecuador. The airport, scheduled to open February 2013, is being constructed and will be operated by Quiport. Quiport also operates the existing Mariscal Sucre airport.

Richard Frank Jr., Darby’s managing director responsible for DLAMF II, commented, “We are very pleased to have concluded this investment in Tabacarcen as it continues Darby’s longstanding commitment to investing in the region and in infrastructure projects. We are attracted to Tabacarcen because of its involvement in the strong Ecuadorian export industry as well as the excellent relationship with Quiport, a world class airport operator.”

Patricio Izurieta Mora Bowen, Tabacarcen’s president, commented “Darby’s investment will allow Tabacarcen to complete construction of the logistics and cargo center, which will consolidate most of Ecuador’s flower exports and receive all cargo arriving to Quito by air. Additionally, Tabacarcen will be a key component of the new airport that will significantly benefit Ecuador and its import-export business.”

The investment in Tabacarcen adds to Darby’s long history in Latin America and follows the success of the Darby Latin American Mezzanine Fund I with 12 investments, all of which have been realized.

Darby has played a pioneering role in bringing mezzanine – a hybrid of both debt and equity – to emerging market regions, initially Latin America, then to Asia and most recently to Central and Southeastern Europe. Currently, DLAMF II is the only dedicated mezzanine provider on a regional basis in Latin America.

Darby Private Equity was founded in 1994 by The Honorable Nicholas F. Brady, who served as U.S. Secretary of the Treasury between 1988 and 1993. Richard Frank joined the firm as CEO in 1997 after his career at the IFC/ World Bank. In 2003 Darby became a fully owned subsidiary of Franklin Resources, Inc. [NYSE:BEN], a global investment management organization operating as Franklin Templeton Investments.

Franklin Templeton Investments provides global and domestic investment management solutions managed by its Franklin, Templeton, Mutual Series, Fiduciary Trust, Darby and Bissett investment teams. The San Mateo, CA-based company has more than 60 years of investment experience and over US$754 billion in assets under management as of October 31, 2012.