The Duet Group is investing in the African hotel sector through a joint venture with Bouygues.

The investment manager said it has teamed up with the French cosntruction group’s Batiment International divsion to create Duet Africa Hotels, a development and asset management company.

It is aiming to raise an initial $200m (€178.6m) for the venture, which will develop, design, build, own, operate and exit a portfolio of internationally branded hotels in sub-Saharan Africa.

Duet Group and Bouygues Bâtiment International will contribute 20% of equity raised.

Duet said the region’s economic growth, a favourable hotel demand-supply imbalance and high barriers to entry are behind the move.

Kamaldeep Manaktala, managing director of Duet Private Equity, said there was a gap in the market for an “institutional grade, fully-funded hotel platform”.

The venture will target Nigeria, Ghana, Ivory Coast, Ethiopia, Tanzania, Mozambique, Kenya and Uganda, with a focus on greenfield developments or significant refurbishments.

Jean-Marc Grosfort, former chief development officer for Middle East and Africa for hotels group Marriott International, will be non-executive chairman of Duet Africa Hotels.

Both standalone and mixed-use formats with office, residential and retail elements will be targeted.