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Notes From Africa: Apollo Agriculture, Agro Care, Shamba Pride, Crown Beverages

By Steve Wynne-Jones
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Notes From Africa: Apollo Agriculture,  Agro Care, Shamba Pride, Crown Beverages

Here’s the latest in ESM’s regular series, Notes From Africa, which brings you the latest retail, consumer goods, and food-and-beverage stories from across the African continent. Past editions can be found here.

Kenya: Apollo Agriculture Secures Loan for Expansion

In Kenya, the agri-food company Apollo Agriculture has secured a $10 million loan from the Swedish agency Swedfund and the German development finance institution DEG. The company, which provides inputs and financing to smallholder farmers, will utilise the funds to expand its lending and input supply services across the country.

Moreover, this financing will accelerate Apollo's growth and enable it to serve an additional 400,000 farmers over the life of the loan.

Nigeria: Lagos State Plans to Build Three Cocoa Processing Plants

In Nigeria, Lagos State plans to construct three new cocoa processing plants by the end of 2025. According to local media reports, these new units will each have a processing capacity of 10,000 tonnes per year.

This investment plan is part of the government's strategy to process around 40% of its harvest by 2025. It also includes funding for the implementation of various training programs to build the capacity of more than 20,000 small-scale agricultural processors or SMEs operating in the sector in the long run.

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Algeria: Soybean Crushing to Commence Production in June

In Algeria, a soybean crushing project currently under construction in Bazoul in the Wilaya of Jijel will commence production by next June. The project involves the construction of an industrial complex specialising in the extraction of vegetable oil from soybeans, a storage warehouse for the oilseed, a crushing unit, and a storage warehouse for the finished product.

Once operational, the complex is scheduled to crush 5,000 tonnes of soybeans, producing 1,000 tonnes of crude oil and 4,000 tonnes of animal feed per day. It is projected to cover 20% of the national market's table oil requirements.

Kenya: Shamba Pride Receives $3.7m for Expansion

Kenyan agritech company Shamba Pride has received $3.7 million in funding from EDFI AgriFI, the European venture capital fund and financing facility for agricultural SMEs. This funding will enable Shamba Pride to accelerate its expansion in Kenya. The company, which provides inputs, will strengthen its working capital requirements and develop additional services for farmers in rural areas.

The additional investment by Seedstars Africa Ventures alongside the AgriFI EDFI financial institution is an important milestone for the company, which plans to reach 200,000 farmers by the end of 2025.

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Morocco: New Tomato Greenhouse Set to Launch

In Morocco, Agro Care, the Dutch giant specialised in tomato production, has commenced work on an 11-hectare greenhouse dedicated to tomato cultivation in Agadir. The facility is set to come online in early 2024. According to local media reports, the new greenhouse will feature modern technology including a mechanical ventilation system, steel cultivation gutters with a water drainage system, an automated internal transport system, and sensors linked to a computer for real-time data collection.

The new project is part of the company's strategy to expand its activities with the aim of eventually increasing its tomato acreage to 100 hectares.

Kenya: Crown Beverages to Acquire Kenya Bottling Company

In Kenya, Mauritian beverage manufacturer Crown Beverages has received the green light from the competition authorities to acquire bottler Kenya Bottling Company.

The company is set to enter the Kenyan soft drinks market, which is largely dominated by the American Coca-Cola, with a 93.9% market share, followed by Kenya Highlands (3.6%) and PepsiCo (1.5%). It operates a bottling plant in Nairobi as an independent bottler for PepsiCo in the country.

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