Agri-processor Coconut Holdings announced it had sold a significant stake to Dutch-based DOB Equity in a deal that promises to transform coconut farming into a vibrant commercial enterprise for coastal communities.
Without disclosing the details, Coconut Holdings chief executive Kyle Denning welcomed the investment promising to enhance his company’s co-operation with DOB Equity in the planned expansion of the business.
“We had an ambitious growth trajectory geared towards unlocking the full potential throughout the value chain that required a financing partner who understands what it takes to secure sourcing, improve the process and enter new markets,” Mr Denning said.
DOB Equity, a family-backed Dutch impact investor with deep interests in East Africa, said its investment in Coconut Holdings is informed by a growing market where more consumers are increasingly becoming health-conscious.
“The investment adds to DOB Equity’s health conscious agri-portfolio that includes the Athi River-based Ten Senses Africa, a macadamia nut producer and processing company,” DOB Equity said.
DOB added that coconut farming and processing had a significant social impact on the 1,500 contracted small-holder farmers who will enjoy higher incomes and more jobs created throughout the value chain from harvesting to processing.
“Coconut processing is a zero-waste business and along with the substantial social impact it has on farmers, the investment fits perfectly in DOB Equity’s portfolio,” Ms Dijk – van de Reijt.
Coconut Holdings owns and operates two coconut processing facilities that process coconut oil, milk and cream in Kenya under the Kenstaste brand.
DOB’s funds’ injection will drive expansion of the processing facilities, launch of new products and widening of Kentaste’s market reach across East Africa.
Last year, Kenya produced 124,000 metric tonnes of coconuts where 34,000 metric tonnes were processed, 72,000 sold locally, 2,000 metric tonnes exported while the rest went to waste.