Agri-Vie and Norfund's Investment Consolidates East African Summer Flower Growers

17 Apr 2018

Agri-Vie and Norfund have announced a US$17mn co-investment into the Marginpar Flower Group Holdings. The Marginpar Group has expanded its business through the acquisition of Carzan Flowers in Kenya, Marginpar Ethiopia in Ethiopia and Marginpar BV in the Netherlands. These acquisitions add to the group’s existing investments in Kariki Limited, a Kenyan summer flower producer.

“The joining of forces will facilitate a future strategy of sustainable growth and amalgamation of innovation, production and marketing within the supply chain of niche and varied summer flowers. Through this consolidation, the individual companies will build on each other’s expertise whilst still being able to focus on their core activities,” says Richard Fernandes, a Director within the Group.

“Norfund is delighted to contribute to the growth of floriculture in East Africa, which is a primary employer and foreign exchange contributor to the East African countries”, says Managing Director of Norfund, Kjell Roland. He adds, “This investment is focused on employment creation and export, and fits very well with our strategy to contribute to sustainable enterprises and economic development in Africa”.

Herman Marais, Agri-Vie co-founder and managing partner at EXEO Capital, the fund manager, says that this investment is a perfect fit for the fund, which focuses on food and agribusiness in Sub-Sahara Africa. “Our vision remains to be a catalyst for sustainable growth through investing in foundation sectors of Africa’s economies. As an increasing proportion of global cut flowers are grown in and exported from East Africa, supporting the sustainable growth of this industry is very much in line with this vision.

“The Kenyan cut flower industry is sophisticated and now one of the world’s leading suppliers of cut flowers with a reported 35% market share in the European Union. Ethiopia is positioned as the second largest flower exporter in Africa after Kenya, with over 100 grower companies on 1,700 hectares. The consolidation of production and marketing capabilities brought about by this transaction is in line with global trends in the industry and will enable a competitive advantage,” he explains.


About the partners:

Agri-Vie Fund II

Agri-Vie is a private equity investment fund focused on food and agribusiness in Sub-Sahara Africa, a foundational sector of the continent’s economies. Since inception in 2008, Agri-Vie has invested US$125mn in the food and agribusiness sector in Africa. The right mix of capital, active partnership and business building expertise enables them to unlock value for investors, while positively impacting on communities and their environment. The Agri-Vie Funds are managed by EXEO Capital.

For more information, visit: and


Norfund is owned by the Government of Norway and serves as an instrument in Norwegian development assistance policy. The fund’s mandate is to support the building of sustainable businesses in developing countries and thereby contribute to economic and social development.

Norfund always invests together with partners, be it Norwegian or international. The three main industries for investments are clean energy, financial institutions and Food & Agribusiness. Norfund’s geographical agri-business focus is in East and Southern Africa, with offices in Nairobi and Maputo. In addition, Norfund invests in selected countries in Asia and Latin America, with regional offices in Costa Rica and Bangkok. Norfund has 69 employees’ world-wide and US$2.5bn in committed investments by the end of 2017.

For more information, visit:


StarBright & Kariki

Starbright, through Kariki, owns four farms situated at differing altitudes in the Kenyan highlands, allowing the group to produce an assortment of different flowers for export, including, Kangaita farm in Nanyuki, Kariki farm in Juja, Kudenga farm in Naivasha and Hamwe farm in Moloa production area of approximately 130 ha of varied and niche summer flowers for the export market employing 1,800 people. Kariki has won global recognition for its successful implementation of the Kaizen model for staff empowerment and productivity in an agribusiness environment.

For more information, visit

Marginpar BV

Marginpar is one of the leading players in marketing and sales of summer flowers from Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia and Zimbabwe, through forming long lasting and sustainable partnerships between breeders, growers and the market.

Going forward all companies linked to the group will trade their product under the Marginpar name strengthening its position as a worldwide brand for interesting, varied and niche summer flowers.

For more information, visit


Carzan was established in 1992 as a small family business which has grown into a full-fledged commercial operation with three large farms spanning 140ha of production creating employment for 1,300 people. The three farms are at two very distinct and separate locations and altitudes which enable the best growing climate for the spread of summer flowers that it produces for the export market.

For more information, visit:

Marginpar Ethiopia

Marginpar Ethiopia was established in 2006 on one site with the focus of producing niche summer flowers. Production now spans over three sites close to each other all in the highlands west of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The company is in the process of scaling up to 60 ha of production of summer flowers all for the export market. Of interest is the ability to utilise Ethiopia’s national airline, Ethiopian to supply product to various markets across the globe from North America, Japan and the Far East.

For more information contact:

At EXEO Capital for Agri-Vie: Mr Herman Marais: +27 83 377 6234

At Norfund: Mr Kjartan Stigen, +47 930 09 638

At Kariki: Mr Richard Fernandes, +254 722 526 768

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