Symbiotics and Oikocredit invest US$ 30.8 million in ETG to support West Africa cocoa and cashew value chains
The loan will help create an additional 200 jobs and support the work of 70,000 smallholder farmers in Cote d’Ivoire, Ghana and Nigeria
Amersfoort, the Netherlands – Symbiotics and Oikocredit have extended a loan of US$ 30.8 million to Agri Commodities & Finance FZ-LLC, the main trading company of the UAE-based Export Trading Group (ETG).
ETG is a global leader in the agriculture commodities market, offering the collection of agriculture products and supply chain solutions across five continents. The loan will support growth in ETG’s cocoa and cashew operations in West Africa for the next three years.
This partnership will facilitate the sourcing of certified cocoa beans and traceable cashew nuts from smallholder farmers and cooperatives in Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, and Nigeria, and strengthen ETG’s sustainability programmes in these countries.
ETG connects smallholder farmers to global markets and has a substantial impact at smallholder level, particularly through its Beyond Beans programmes. The programmes focus on developing smallholder farms and their communities by implementing environmental projects. For example, the Cocoa & Forests Initiative delivers forest farmer group training, land and tree tenure, individual farmer coaching, seedling distribution and farmer empowerment.
Anish Jain, ETG’s Chief Treasury Officer, stated: “We are extremely grateful for the support of Symbiotics and Oikocredit, which will help us support our cashew and cocoa operations in West Africa, and will help enhance agricultural value chains and the livelihoods of smallholder farmers in this region to help in building a sustainable future.”
Vincent Lehner, Symbiotics’ Head of Markets, said: “Agriculture and rural development have been crucial for economic growth in most African countries. We are delighted to start our partnership with ETG, we believe the Group’s impact and success are helping to strengthen Africa’s agricultural sector, which will reduce poverty among smallholder farmers on the continent.”
Yves Komaclo, Oikocredit's Investment Manager for West Africa, stated: "We are very pleased to support ETG, as their focus on smallholder farmers aligns well with Oikocredit’s mission. Our collaboration will help sustain a market outlet for cocoa and cashew farmers, then in turn, improve livelihoods of farmer communities and contribute to the professionalisation of affiliated farmer organisations.”
Export Trading Group (ETG) is one of the largest and fastest growing integrated agricultural supply chain managers and processors in sub-Saharan Africa, with operations across 48 countries globally. ETG has developed into a global player with a diverse portfolio of expertise across various industries, encompassing agricultural inputs, logistics, merchandising, food processing and supply chain optimisation. For more information: www.etgworld.com.
Symbiotics is the leading market access platform for impact investing, dedicated to financing micro, small and medium enterprises and low and middle-income households in emerging and frontier markets. Since 2005, Symbiotics has structured and originated some 4,000 deals for over 490 companies in almost 90 emerging and frontier markets representing more than USD 6.5 billion. These investments have been purchased by more than 25 fund mandates and more than 50 third party specialised fund managers, forming a growing ecosystem and marketplace for such transactions. For more information: www.symbioticsgroup.com.
Social impact investor and worldwide cooperative Oikocredit has 46 years of experience funding organisations active in financial inclusion, agriculture and renewable energy. Oikocredit's loans, equity investments and capacity building aim to enable people on low incomes in Africa, Asia and Latin America to improve their living standards sustainably.
Oikocredit finances 529 partners, with total outstanding capital of € 836 million (at 30 June 2021). For more information: www.oikocredit.coop.
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