Norfund and a consortium of private investors managed by 54 Capital announce USD 21 million growth capital investment into Ethiopia’s largest FMCG platform SAMANU. the investment will Increase local production of edible oil which will create jobs, increase food security, and provide income for up to 200,000 smallholder farmers.
SAMANU is a platform company with brands operating in Ethiopia’s main FMCG sub-sectors such as Tena Edible Oils, 555 and Aura Soap & Detergents, and Chef Luca wheat products.
The investment by Norfund will fund the construction of a new solvent extraction plant to produce edible oils based on locally sourced sesame, sunflower and soya beans in its refineries. By lowering the dependency on imported raw materials, the investment aims to create jobs in value-addition and increase Ethiopia’s food security. The completion of a vertical integration project will also allow for increased export opportunities within the sectors the company already operates.
according to Norfund, to ensure enough volume of locally produced oilseeds for its refineries, the company also intends to develop large oilseeds clusters in Ethiopia over the next six years, providing livelihoods for 200,000 smallholder farmers. In the first six months post investment, the objective is to identify 642 clusters and sign contracts with around 5-7,000 smallholder farmers.
Norfund, through its Business Support Facility, plans to use grant funding to assist contracted smallholder farmers with inputs like high quality seeds, fertilizers, training and capacity building, as well as agricultural technology to boost productivity.
Andreas Davidsen, Norfund’s VP of Scalable Enterprises – Agribusiness & Manufacturing, said: “We are excited to partner with SAMANU and support the execution of their vertical integration strategy, creating jobs and increasing food security. We strongly believe in the opportunities of local food production in Ethiopia and Norfund looks forward to working closely with the SAMANU management team and 54 Capital to help implement best in class practises and solutions”.
SAMANU is already home to some of Ethiopia’s leading FMCG brands and has ambitious plans to expand its product offering to meet rising demand for high quality locally produced brands. The investment, Norfund’s first in manufacturing in Ethiopia, signals strong institutional backing for the platform.