KfW, AgDevCo and Root Capital launched today a $15 million lending facility for African agribusinesses. Read the whole story here.
USAID's Southern Africa Trade hub implemented the first live Warehouse Receipt for White Maize in Mozambique at ECA's Catandica warehouse. A warehouse receipt system (WRS) enables farmers to deposit their product and receive a receipt for collateral whcih grants them access to credit; the farmer then has the option to sell when market prices are most favourable. ECA is acting as one of the four warehouse facilities selected for the pilot programme. Read the whole story here.
Tropha, one of the businesses in which AgDevCo Malawi Ltd. has invested, is engaging with around 2,000 smallholder farmers, boosting their incomes by about $200 per farmer. Read the whole story here.
AgDevCo's investment helped small soya yogurt producer Lucas Mujuju in Mozambique to expand his business "So Soja". Read the story here.
AgDevCo invests USD 2m in Malawian macadamia nut company "Tropha". Read the story here.
Read Chris Isaac's latest blog post on EVPA (European Venture Philantophy Association) website: Investing in African Agriculture - a $365 bn per year opportunity for social investors.
On 16 September in London, UK, AgDevCo celebrated its five-year anniversary at an event attended by over 100 partners, supporters and industry stakeholders. You can read a report about the event and see the photographs here.
It is a huge opportunity. According to the United Nations' Food & Agriculture Organisation (FAO), $35 billion worth of agricultural goods is imported into Africa annually. With a growing middle class and a population set to reach two billion by 2050, demand for more and better quality food will continue to rise.
There are large areas of arable land and plentiful water resources in many parts of Africa. Surely investors can play a role in reversing the flow of food imports? With the right types of capital and expertise, Africa should be able to feed itself and sell a surplus to the rest of the world.
Read the full article by AgDevCo's Chris Isaac on the European Venture Philanthropy Association website.
Over the past five years, AgDevCo has grown to become a leading investor in the African agriculture sector, with headquarters in London and field offices in Mozamique, Tanzania, Ghana, Malawi and Zambia.
To date AgDevCo has invested $43m in over 40 agribusinesses and linked over 17,500 farmers to profitable markets.
Read about our story so far in our latest Annual Review.
For the full review please click here.
AgDevCo is delighted to become a member of EVPA, the #1 network of European social investors & venture philanthropists.
For more information click here.
Find out more about how ECA, an innovative social enterprise supported by AgDevCo (BAGC CF), is helping to change the lives of smallholder farmers in Mozambique.
Watch the video here.
AgDevCo provided a working capital loan of USD 225,000 to Tropha Ltd in Malawi to buy, process and sell 100 tonnes of birds eye chillies. The programme should provide incremental cash incomes of about USD 130,000 to 4,000 smallholder farmers in the area, who currently do not have access to a reliable market for their crop.
AgDevCo is pleased to confirm that we are entering into three co-investment partnerships with Tanzanian businesses. The proposed AgDevCo investments will be funded by the UK Department for International Development as announced today by Secretary of State, Justine Greening - see DFID press notice. Justine Greening's speech "Tanzania Rising" can be viewed here.
Details of the proposed AgDevCo investment partnerships to be funded by DFID are as follows:
With Tanzania Tea Packers (Tatepa), to support the pioneering Suma Hydro Project, which is part of tea industry efforts to "green" tea production in Tanzania. The project has the potential to provide Wakalima Tea Company with a reliable and renewable power source, whilst also selling power onto the local grid, boosting employment and incomes in the Rungwe District. With DIFD funding, AgDevCo intends to support the project in its early stages through the provision of development capital, following which and subject to further due diligence, AgDevCo is pleased to provide in principle support for up to £2.5 million equivalent of risk capital to implement the project.
With Equity for Tanzania (EFTA), to support the expansion of EFTA's innovative financial leasing business, which provides equipment finance to small enterprises and farmer groups who are beyond the scale of micro-credit. The expansion of this business will allow access to finance for agribusiness entrepreneurs and farmers who might otherwise be "unbankable". Subject to further due diligence and the development of an agreed business plan, AgDevCo is pleased to provide in principle support for up to £3.3 million equivalent of risk capital to the business. We see our proposed investment in EFTA as part of a strategic alliance reflecting AgdevCo and EFTA's common objectives.
With Agrica, an intention to invest £6.3 million ($10m) in Kilombero Plantations Ltd (KPL), the Tanzanian subsidiary of Agrica, a British farm development company. AgDevCo's investment is funded by DFID as part of their Blended Partnerships initiative. Since 2008, after $40 million of investment, KPL has become East Africa's leading rice producer with a 5,000-hectare nucleus commercial farm and a transformative satellite smallholder programme lifting 5,000 farmer families from subsistence to surplus (see BBC TV story http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-19762740). The AgDevCo investment, which assumes improvements in the application of agricultural tariff policy by the Government of Tanzania, will be divided into two parts: an initial investment of $850,000 for a pilot rice-husk gasification plant to provide electricity for KPL's current operations and prove concept for larger biomass plants needed to expand irrigation across 3,000 hectares, and subject to customary due diligence, a follow-on investment in mid-2014 of $9.15 million for the expansion of biomass power, irrigation and the smallholder programme. This DFID investment in sustainable commercial staple crop production is a model for future African food security.
AgDevCo celebrated its 4th anniversary by bringing together donors, investors, practitioners and others focused on the development of a sustainable agriculture sector in Africa for its annual event on 19th September 2013.
The theme of the event was Investing for Impact in African Agriculture: Stories from the Field, which illustrated how AgDevCo is partnering with its investees on the ground in Mozambique, Tanzania, Ghana, Zambia and Malawi to deliver positive benefits to smallholder farmers and local communities.
The afternoon commenced with a welcome from Keith Palmer (Chairman), whose comments included:
"We are grateful for the generous support of our funders whose commitments have allowed us to scale our operations across five countries where we are seeking to develop $30-40 m investment portfolios in each country."
Daniel Hulls (CEO) and Chris Isaac (Director of Business Development) continued the discussion and the second half of the afternoon featured a panel of AgDevCo team members and investees who highlighted AgDevCo's value-added role with respect to two investments in Mozambique and Ghana.
For the full press release, please click here.
During his visit to Ghana on the 4th July UK Minister for Africa Mark Simmonds announced that £10 million (USD 15 million) of funding for agricultural investment from the UK Department for International Development (DFID) will be channelled through AgDevCo. the fund will invest between USD 200,000 and 1,000,000 in the form of concessional debt and equity in small- and medium-sized agricultural businesses in northern Ghana. Hands on management support and technical assistance will also be provided. As a result 160,000 small-scale farmers will be linked to better markets and experience an increase in their income.
It is anticipated that the fund will be operational by the end of 2013. AgDevCo has already established an office in Ghana, making it easier to identify eligible businesses through our networks, business associations and occasional calls for proposals.
For the announcement please click here.
The UK Government £50 million investment into AgDevCo will benefit 650,000 people across Africa through the development and expansion of 45 agri-businesses. it is expected that this investment in AgDevCo will create 27,000 additional jobs and help 90,000 people to benefit from an average additional income of over $1000 per year over the next decade. Alongside this AgDevCo will implement improvements in irrigation and processing for commercial agribusiness for 49,000 farmers. Justine Greening said: "This sort of innovative, self sustaining, job-creating investment which generates a return that can be itself reinvested will become an increasingly important part of DFID's development approach." All of such development will leverage up to £350 million private investment in addition to the initial £50 million UK investment.
For the announcement please click here.
The UK Government will boost investment into African farming and agriculture to help the continent escape the threat of hunger and malnutrition, Justine Greening will announce today, Saturday 8th June, in a speech at the New Alliance for Food Security and Nutrition event. The UK government will provide £50 million to help AgDevCo set up a new fund which will invest in agricultural SMEs, smallholder farmes and new agribusiness ventures. This will benefit 650,000 people across Africa with jobs and better incomes, as well as help smallholder farmers grow more food to combat food shortages and malnutrition.
Please click here for more information.
As part of its PPP irrigated grain farm developments in the SADA region of Ghana, AgDevCo set up irrigated demonstration fields to ascertain whether commercially viable yields of grains, including maize, soya, sorghum and rice are attainable in the dry season. Initial (very encouraging) harvests were overseen by local farmer as well as government agencies including two leading crop research scientists in the country and included both locally adapted and imported hybrid varieties. AgDevCo is now increasing its demonstration program to additional sites across the SADA region in collaboration with local farmers.
For the full article on Ghana News Agency please click here.
AgDevCo was cited in the latest issue of Spore Magazine, a publication covering agricultural and rural development in African, Caribbean and Pacific countries.
The article entitled "Agricultural Growth Corridors: New Routes to Opportunity" reports on Agricultural growth corridors across Africa and states that:
"As a partner in joint ventures, AgDevCo is bound to provide ongoing support and to see that the projects become self-sustaining and sustainable. This, in a nutshell, is a model for the kind of investment that will be needed if small farmers are to thrive in the corridors - but again, it is too early to say whether other venture capitalists outside of the donor-fuelled catalytic funds will be as committed in their support."
For the full article please click here.
AgDevCo was cited in Lynne Featherstone's latest blog post "Mobile Money Opens Up New Opportunities for Mozambique's Small and Medium Businesses".
DFID Minister Lynne Featherstone is currently in Mozambique with Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg.
Yesterday the DFID Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister met a number of Mozambican SMEs funded by the BAGC Catalytic Fund, which is managed by AgDevCo.
In the blog post Lynne Featherstone praises the business managers' enthusiasm and commitment and the work being developed by AgDevCo in the country in partnership with DFID.
To read the full blog post please click here.
Launched in 2010, the Beira Agricultural Growth Corridor (BAGC) programme is helping Mozambique achieve its enormous potential in agriculture, while ensuring that smallholder farmers see the benefits.
On the occasion of a visit to Maputo by the United Kingdom's Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, the BAGC is delighted to announce three new initiatives which will link Mozambican farmers to profitable markets.
For the full press release please click here.