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Wadi Holdings Gets New Investors

by 5m Editor
19 April 2010, at 10:58am

EGYPT - Wadi Holdings, which has significant operations in both the poultry meat and egg sectors, has been purchased by Capital Trust and Proparco.

Capital Trust has announced, in cooperation with Proparco (the French government development arm, part of L'Agence Française de Developpement (AFD)), their investment in Wadi Holdings, a holding company operating in the agricultural and food industries in Egypt, through an investment of US$8.5 million.

Capital Trust stated that its investment fund EuroMena has contributed $5.5 million in the Wadi transaction and Proparco contributed $3 million.

Wadi Holdings owns 14 subsidiaries operating in the agricultural and food industries with around three thousand and five hundred employees and revenues of around $240 million in 2009.

Wadi Holdings operates in four business units. The major unit relates to poultry and focuses on raising chicks of various world breeds and the production of one day-old chicks that are sold to farmers to raise them up in order to have table eggs and poultry meat. Wadi Holdings was awarded many prizes in Egypt and the Middle East region, for applying strict biosecurity procedures, and for being the leader in the implementation of such procedures.

Wadi Holdings operates as well in the agricultural and food sectors. It focuses on olive and grape plantations and the production of its derivatives such as olive oil, olives, pickles and other products. Wadi Holdings won several awards and certificates (ISO and HACCP) after having participated in many competitions organized by the World Council of olive oil.

Wadi Holdings is actively involved as well in the production and trading of feed, in addition to the production of glass containers, which is partially used for canning its own food products, with many expansion plans set in this field. Wadi Holdings aims to be the leader in the production of glass containers in Egypt in 2010 especially after the operation of new furnaces with the capacity of 240 tons per day. Moussa Freiji, Wadi Holdings President, Tony Freiji, Executive Director and Ramzi Nasrallah, Chief Financial Officer, welcomed the new investors and confirmed that Wadi Holdings is a leader in the agro-industrial sector on the local and the regional levels and established an extensive presence in the region especially in Lebanon and Sudan. Euromena and Proparco will assist Wadi Holdings in its expansion and growth plans. Gilles de Clerck, Senior Manager of the EuroMena Funds stated that Wadi Holdings offers significant growth opportunities in line with EuroMena investment strategy which aims to develop and consolidate the promising sectors and industries in the Middle East and North Africa.

Guillaume Mortelier, an official of Proparco, declared that he is very comfortable with the said partnership and added: "We believe it is a successful operation, considering that Wadi Holdings benefits from an excellent track-record since its foundation and opens up very promising opportunities." He pointed out that Proparco is seeking to fund a number of expansion projects related to the group, including the acquisition and development of agricultural lands in Sudan, with the development dimension of Proparco's mission and objectives.

Mr de Clerck stated that the partnership with Freiji and Nasrallah, two Lebanese families and majority owners of Wadi Holdings, will pave the way for other investments in the field of the agriculture and food industries. He added that the investment of EuroMena in Wadi Holdings is a starting point for other projects and investments in the field of agricultural and food Industries, especially that a high demand is expected in the coming years. He added that Wadi Holdings is characterised by the diversity of the sectors it operates in while providing a wide range of exit strategies.

Romen Mathieu, Managing Director of EuroMena, pointed out that EuroMena aims as usual to exit from the investments within three to five years. He noted as well that one of the exit strategies available for EuroMena investment from Wadi Holdings is listing the company on the Egyptian Stock Exchange in the coming years then offering it for public subscription, through an initial public offering.