Amethis, acquires a minority stake in the Merec Industries, leader in the production and distribution of wheat and maize based products in Mozambique.
Amethis Fund II, alongside its partners Kibo Fund II and Proparco are pleased to announce their partnership with Merec Industries (Merec) of Mozambique. The transaction marks the acquisition of a minority equity stake into an established fully integrated wheat miller with a promising strategy to reinforce its dominant position in Mozambique and expand in the region.
Created in 2001, Merec is a leading miller and packaged food manufacturer in Mozambique with an increasingly strong export focus. After a successful diversification from wheat and maize milling to a diversified food FMCG player (pasta, biscuit and animal feed), this family owned group has developed a strong footprint in the SADC region.
This investment, the second for Amethis’ new Fund II, will support Merec’s strategy engaged by its founder Mhamud Charania towards building an integrated multinational packaged food group. Merec aims to launch new categories, build brands, structure local partnerships and make new strategic acquisitions both in Mozambique and in Southern African countries. The group will, then, strengthen its position locally, continue its product diversification into new wheat-based higher-value products and keep expanding its activity over the region.
Jean-Sebastien Bergasse, Partner at Amethis, declared:
“Merec is a perfect partner for our first investment in Southern Africa. We believe Amethis is investing at a turning point of Merec’s development. The group, with our support, aims to become a regional platform of wheat based food products through the expansion of its distribution network at a local level and regionally. This transformation will also be supported by continuous innovation in order to diversify the product line.”
Mhamud Charania, Chairman of Merec Industries, a prominent serial entrepreneur who has been operating in the country’s industrial landscape since early 2000, commented:
“We are very excited about this partnership with Amethis, Kibo and Proparco. Through this investment, Merec is firmly poised to capture the next phase of its growth trajectory from a strong capital base to accelerate future growth. We will be reinforcing our leadership positions in our key product categories, expanding our full value chain and investing in a modern industrial bakery for vertical integration. We look forward to leveraging the deep relationships of our new partners in the region and the operational support they bring to achieve our joint vision.”
BellHouse Capital and CGA Law acted as the company’s transaction advisors while Anjarwala & Khanna and KPMG represented the investors.
This deal represents a precursor transaction (especially in FMCG and not an oil related sector) in the young Mozambican market, in which the investors are amongst the first few financial Sponsors to see bright prospects. Despite its latest economic turmoil, the country benefits from a strong demographic profile, backed by strong historical GDP growth and a favourable geographic location. The investors assess the country to be now macro-economic stabilized and ready for a promising outlook.
Amethis is an investment fund manager dedicated to the African continent, with an investment capacity exceeding €600m. Amethis brings growth capital to promising midcap champions in a diversity of sectors throughout the African continent. As an active shareholder, Amethis offers key support and expertise through its international network, its opportunities of external growth and its value-added governance.
Proparco is a subsidiary of Agence Française de Développement (AFD) focused on private sector development. It has been promoting sustainable economic, social and environmental development practices for the past 40 years. Proparco provides funding and support to both businesses and financial institutions across Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Middle-East. It seeks to partner projects in key development sectors – infrastructure (with a specific focus on renewable energies), agribusiness, financial institutions, healthcare and education, etc. – and to boost the contribution of the private sector to achieving the sustainable development goals adopted by the international community in 2015.
Kibo Capital Partners is a manager of regional private equity funds, with offices in Mauritius and Kenya. It has raised two funds since 2008 with combined funds under management of about US$100mn. Its funds target growth companies in Eastern and Southern Africa and the islands of the Indian Ocean.
Jean-Sebastien Bergasse, Partner
T: +33 1 56 68 85 67
Frank Ndiyo, Investment Manager
T: +254 7 20 168 900
Abel Rossignol, Associate
Thierry Hugnin, Managing Partner
Raj Domun, Principal
Benoit Lagente, Investment Officer
Jonathan Piquet, Investment Officer