African PE firm Phatisa agrees Feronia palm oil stake deal


Africa-focused fund manager Phatisa has agreed to buy a stake in Feronia, a large-scale palm oil producer in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Phatisa hopes to make a $10.5m investment through its African Agriculture Fund, a pan-African agriculture and food private equity vehicle.

AAF will pick up more than 42 million shares in the company in a $5m first tranche, representing 19.9 per cent of Feronia’s common shares.

That tranche is expected to close in early January 2013.

Two AAF nominees, David White and Anders Einarsson, will join the Feronia board of directors as part of the deal.

AAF has agreed to buy another 46 million shares for about $5.5m in a second tranche, which is expected to close following a meeting of the company’s shareholders that is expected to take place in late February 2013.

The fund is targeting $300m of commitments and has already received investment from LPs including development finance institutions (DFIs) Agence Française de Développement, the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation and Promotion et Participation pour la Coopération Économique.

African DFI investors include the African Development Bank, the Development Bank of Southern Africa, the West African Development Bank and the ECOWAS Bank of Investment and Development.

In May Phatisa also bought Golden Lay, a Zambia-based company involved in the production, distribution and sale of chicken table eggs, in a $24m secondary transaction from emerging markets investor Aureos.

Golden Lay is the foremost producer of table eggs in Zambia, supplying its products to the Copperbelt and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

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