Johannesburg, South Africa, July 1, 2002—The
International Finance Corporation (IFC), the private sector lending arm
of the World Bank Group, is investing US$37 million to expand the operations
of Coca-Cola Sabco (East Africa) Ltd. in East Africa and Mozambique.
IFC’s investment package of loans, equity, and guarantees to local banks
will supplement the already substantial re-investment by Sabco in its 13
Coca-Cola bottling plants in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Ethiopia, and Mozambique.
Sabco plans to spend over $125 million from 2002-2005 to expand its
bottling capacity and add new products, including bottled water brands.
Coca-Cola Sabco (East Africa) Ltd. is the second largest bottler of Coca-Cola
products in South Africa and the largest in East Africa. It is owned
76 percent by Gutsche Family Investments of South Africa and 24 percent
by the Coca-Cola Company of the United States. It is one of only
seven bottling groups worldwide in which Coca-Cola has a direct equity
investment. IFC will now become a shareholder in Sabco’s East African
operations. Sabco was advised by Brait Merchant Bank in sourcing
and arranging the funding.
Mr. Michael Hooper, IFC’s Country Manager for Southern Africa, said, “The
project will boost Sabco’s activities in the region and provide a broad
range of benefits to suppliers, governments, employees, and the community.”
Sabco directly employs over 4,000 people in East Africa. The multiplier
effect of the company’s operations is strong with as much as 60,000 people
indirectly employed in the distribution and supply chain. Sabco has
a solid record as a good corporate citizen sponsoring youth sports, education
programs, and in fighting AIDS.
Mr. Colin Rushmere, Sabco’s Finance Director, said, “The rationale for
continuing Sabco’s expansion in East Africa and Mozambique is the relatively
under-developed nature of some of the markets, particularly in Ethiopia,
and the growth in population and incomes which is spurring the demand for
carbonated and other soft drinks.”
IFC’s mission is to promote sustainable private sector investment in developing
countries, helping to reduce poverty and improve people’s lives. IFC
finances private sector investments in the developing world, mobilizes
capital in the international financial markets, and provides technical
assistance and advice to governments and businesses. Since its founding
in 1956 through the close of the last fiscal year on June 30, 2001, IFC
committed more than $31 billion of its own funds and arranged $20 billion
in syndications for 2,636 companies in 140 developing countries. IFC’s
committed portfolio at the end of FY01 was $14.3 billion.