GroFin, a firm that provides financing for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs), has received a grant from the United States government that will enable it to invest up to Sh1 billion ($10 million) in East African agribusinesses.
The United States Agency for International Development (USAid) in a statement said the funds would benefit SMEs in Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Tanzania.
With the money, GroFin will review 200 agribusinesses from which it will draw a smaller pool of enterprises for commercial investment in the form of debt and quasi-equity. While the firm has not disclosed the value of the grant from USAid, it says that under the programme it will invest up to Sh1 billion in the businesses.
“Our intent is to provide business support and assistance to catalyse investments into food security, staple foods and high value nutrition products,” said Rishi Khubchandani, investment executive at GroFin.
Businesses will also be provided technical support including on creating and implementing effective business plans and incorporating sound environmental practices into their processes.
Companies targeted under the programme will have to demonstrate that they are contributing to food security, using technology in waste management on the agricultural value chain and increasing productivity through innovation.
The funds have been extended through the East Africa Trade and Investment Hub, a programme funded by USAid to support regional integration and competitiveness in the agricultural sector.
GroFin operates in Africa and the Middle East with a presence in at least 14 countries.