Print Edition - 2015-06-05 | MONEY
IFC invests $3.8 million in agribusiness sector
Jun 4, 2015-
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, and the Private Sector Window of the Global Agriculture and Food Security Programme have disbursed $3.8 million to Probiotech Industries, a commitment announced last year.
This is IFC’s first investment in Nepal’s agribusiness sector. Probiotech is one of the early organized poultry feed manufacturers that set up the first pellet feed mill in the country.
The company will use the funding to finance manufacturing capacity for high-margin value-added products such as soya flour nuggets and refined oil, and streamline the food supply chain.
IFC said that the fund reaffirms the private sector and its commitment to support the country as it rebuilds itself after the devastating earthquake. “In the backdrop of the earthquake that devastated the country, this financing package reaffirms that investors are not shying away from Nepal,” said Anand Bagaria, managing director of Probiotech.
“Through IFC’s investment and advice, we seek to rebuild this important sector and adopt best practices for production efficiency, environmental and social standards, and to upgrade technology.”
The financing will also enable Probiotech to expand its procurement and distribution networks. Currently, the company distributes its products through 100 registered dealers and 500 sub-dealers across 70 districts. As a result, the company will increase sourcing from over 8,000 farmers and food suppliers, improving food safety standards and boosting their incomes.
“This project will increase the supply of quality soy-based protein, especially for the low-income people of Nepal where malnutrition is prevalent, and promote food security,” said Patrick Leahy, head of Industry, Manufacturing, Agribusiness and Services, IFC Asia Pacific.
“IFC remains committed to supporting Nepal as it rebuilds its agribusiness sector that employs 70 percent of the workforce,” said Vivek Pathak, IFC’s Director for Asia-Pacific. “This investment will help create jobs, both at the plant and farm level, and have a direct positive impact on farmers’ incomes.”
As of March 2015, IFC has a committed portfolio of $3.3 billion across the agricultural value chain globally. IFC’s agribusiness strategy aims to promote inclusive growth and environmental and social sustainability in agricultural supply chains.
A past advisory project of IFC helped small poultry farmers in Nepal make their businesses more productive through better farm management practices that reduce costs and improve poultry quality.
Published: 05-06-2015 08:44