Washington, D.C., July 6, 2010 –
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, committed a $7 million equity investment
in Agri-Vie Agribusiness Private Equity Fund financing food and agribusiness
companies in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Agri-Vie seeks to make equity investments in commercially attractive food
and agribusiness companies with strong management that need equity financing
to pursue their growth business plans and go to the next level of performance
through corporate governance and financial structure improvement. By supporting
the growth of commercial agribusiness enterprises, the Fund promotes local
entrepreneurship, local economic empowerment, agribusiness development,
and job creation. The fund has made five investments since its inception.
“Agri-Vie’s Management Team has developed substantive expertise in investing
in the agribusiness sector and the Fund is a specialized, pioneer agribusiness
private equity investor in the Region. The Fund adds value to its investee
companies by improving their financial structure, participating actively
on companies’ boards, assisting in strategy development and implementation,
helping improve corporate governance and environmental and social standards,
and providing financial advice”, said Mr. Herman Marais, Agri-Vie’s Managing
Director. IFC’s support in the further development of the Fund has been
instrumental in the positioning of Agri-Vie in the investor market, Marais
“By supporting Agri-Vie, IFC can effectively channel its financing to
reach small and medium food and agri companies in Sub-Saharan Africa. This
complements IFC’s direct financing to larger enterprises as we seek to
promote the growth of the agricultural sector to create opportunities for
the rural population and improve food security on the continent,” said
Oscar Chemerinski, IFC’s Director of Global Agribusiness Department.
IFC's strategy in Sub-Saharan Africa focuses on proactively engaging with
the private sector through investments and advisory services to support
new private investments, offering products and services to support smaller
businesses, and helping to improve the region's investment climate. IFC
also focuses on the poorest countries and those affected by conflict, and
priority sectors such as agribusiness.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, creates opportunity for people to
escape poverty and improve their lives. We foster sustainable economic
growth in developing countries by supporting private sector development,
mobilizing capital for private enterprise, and providing advisory and risk
mitigation services to businesses and governments. Our new investments
totaled $14.5 billion in fiscal 2009, helping channel capital into developing
countries during the financial crisis. For more information, visit www.ifc.org.
Agri-Vie is a private equity investment fund focused on food and agribusiness
in Sub-Saharan Africa.Agri-Vie’s mission is to generate a commercial return,
as well as demonstrable socio-economic development impacts through equity
investments in agribusinesses. Agri-Vie’s vision is to be a catalyst for
sustainable growth through investing in one of the foundation sectors of
Africa’s economies. The fund seeks to realise this vision through deploying
development capital and management know-how according to sound investment
and business principles.