Injaro Invests in Gold Coast Fruits
June 22, 2016
Injaro Agricultural Capital Holdings Limited (IACHL), the impact investment fund managed by Injaro Investments, announces an investment in Ghana’s pineapple sector. IACHL, through its Ghanaian subsidiary Injaro Agricultural Venture Capital Limited (IAVCL), has signed an agreement to invest in Gold Coast Fruits Limited (GCF), a Ghanaian pineapple exporter based in Accra.
Founded in 2005, GCF is one of Ghana’s leading exporters of ‘Golden Sweet’ (MD2) pineapple with customers in Switzerland, France, The Netherlands, Morocco, and the United Arab Emirates. GCF has also been Global GAP and FairTrade certified since 2008. The investment by Injaro will help GCF increase the volume and quality of fruits grown on its farms, expand its reach and market share in rapidly growing emerging markets and source fruits from a larger number of smallholder farmers.
The capital provided by Injaro would allow GCF to invest in new equipment and technology, rehabilitate ageing farm infrastructure, strengthen its management team, develop cost efficient farming methods and expand its reach across the Middle East and North African region. The investment will also benefit local farmers. In conjunction with this investment, the Injaro’s Technical Assistance Facility (TAF) will subsidize a smallholder support scheme. This programme will integrate a minimum of 150 local smallholder farmers dedicated to supplying fresh fruits to the company. The Company will provide inputs, extension services and guarantee offtake for smallholder farmers. By improving farmer productivity and expanding its outgrower network GCF will be able to satisfy currently unmet export demand for its fresh fruits.
Managing Director of Gold Coast Fruits, Mr. Samuel Borlu, said “While GCF has proven to be one of the few producers in Ghana that can successfully cultivate MD2 on a commercial scale, we have been unable to expand production over the past couple of years due to our limited financial capacity. With Injaro’s investment, we expect to multiply production, significantly improve profitability and restart our outgrower programme. With Injaro’s support, current initiatives financed by the company’s FairTrade Premium Committee such as covering the school fees of the children of staff at secondary schools will become more sustainable. Management also expects Injaro’s entry to strengthen GCF’s position in the market as an ethical producer and more sustainable by increasing cooperation with our community, lowering the environmental impact of our operations and facilitating knowledge transfer on MD2 cultivation to smallholder farmers. Finally, by providing both equity and debt financing, Injaro provides an effective financing structure that will put GCF on a solid footing to become a pivotal player in the fresh fruit export sector in Ghana.”
Andrew Tarazid-Tarawali, Investment Analyst of Injaro Investment Advisors stated, “We are excited to have made the investment in GCF given the growing global demand for fresh pineapples driven by the global adoption of healthier lifestyles by the middle class. We look forward to working with the GCF team and its partners to grow GCF’s business while once again positioning Ghana as a key pineapple exporter.”
Jerry Parkes, MD of Injaro Investment Advisors added “This investment reinforces Injaro’s long term support of Ghana’s agriculture sector and hopes to enhance the economic contributions made by the country’s hardworking smallholder farmers. We recognise the efforts of GCF’s enterprising founders, Annona Sustainable Investments, GCB Bank and Stanbic Bank whose support over the years has
developed the company into a major local player. I believe that with Injaro’s partnership we can together revitalise the company to become an undisputed market leader.”
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