Kyiv, Ukraine, October 6, 2015—IFC,
a member of the World Bank Group, is providing up to $35 million to Ukraine’s
leading agricultural producer, Astarta, to help the company diversify its
business, boost soybean production in Ukraine and create hundreds of jobs
in rural areas.
IFC’s financing to Astarta, which includes
a $15 million loan for IFC’s own account and $20 million in debt mobilized
from other investors, will help Astarta finance its soybean crushing operation,
diversifying its business and securing liquidity at a time when access
to finance at the Ukrainian market is limited.
“Given that prices for most grains,
dairy and sugar are now low and the macroeconomic situation remains unstable,
we are focusing our efforts on increasing efficiency, cutting costs and
ensuring profitability. In the long term, growth, diversification and leadership
in innovation remain our key strategic priorities,” said Viktor Ivanchyk,
Rufat Alimardanov, IFC Country Manager
for Ukraine and Belarus, said, “Our new project with Astarta highlights
how IFC helps Ukrainian agribusiness producers play a bigger role in global
food security. We believe in the competitive advantages of the Ukrainian
agricultural sector and are working to facilitate more investments into
this vital part of the Ukrainian economy.”
Ukraine accounts for about 10 percent
of global grain exports. Astarta supplies grain to Asia, North Africa and
the Middle East. One of Ukraine’s leading agribusiness producers, the
company employs more than 13,000 people and is an important contributor
to rural economic activity in the six Ukrainian regions where it operates.
Ukraine’s agribusiness sector is a
key driving force for the national economy, accounting for about 20 percent
of employment and over a quarter of exports. IFC supports the entire value
chain in agribusiness, from farm production to collection, processing,
IFC also offers advisory programs in
Ukraine focused on simplifying business regulations for agribusiness, expanding
access to finance for farmers, encouraging commercial bank lending to the
sector, and developing the agri-insurance market. IFC also works to enhance
the competitiveness of local players by supporting improvements in food
safety management and resource efficiency.
Founded in 1993, Astarta is a vertically
integrated agro-industrial company specializing in sugar and agricultural
production. The agricultural business focuses primarily on the cultivation
of sugar beet, grains and oilseeds, the production of high quality white
sugar and milk, as well as processing of oilseeds. . For more information,
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group,
is the largest global development institution focused on the private sector
in emerging markets. Working with more than 2,000 businesses worldwide,
we use our capital, expertise, and influence, to create opportunity where
it’s needed most. In FY15, our long-term investments in developing countries
rose to nearly $18 billion, helping the private sector play an essential
role in the global effort to end extreme poverty and boost shared prosperity.
For more information, visit www.ifc.org.