Bamboo Finance is teaming up with Louis Dreyfus Holding to launch and manage a new impact investment fund which will target SMEs in the agribusiness sector in sub-Saharan Africa. Louis Dreyfus Holding is seeding the fund, NISABA, with $10 million. The partnership expects to hold the final close for the fund, which is hard-capped at $50 million, in mid-late 2017.
The fund is attracting interest from investors in both the developed world—specifically impact investors and DFIs—as well as African pension funds.
“We are excited to apply an integrated investment approach with a vast network of local expertise for the benefit of smallholder farmers and their communities, while demonstrating the value of impact investing,” said Bamboo Finance CEO, Jean Philippe de Schrevel. “This is a pioneer partnership that will merge multinational sector expertise with access to finance and impact investment know-how, in order to actively co-manage investments from pipeline to exit.”
The fund, which has a pipeline of opportunities across several segments of the dairy value chain in East Africa and in highly fragmented markets such as rice in Senegal, will target opportunities that both maximize impact and generate returns. Capital will be deployed where the agribusiness sector as a whole has a relevant place in the local economy and society, offers room for development and has a high potential for impact.
Arendt and Medernach provided Bamboo with legal advisory services in setting up the fund.