Agricorp raises $17.5 million to become the largest spices export startup in Africa
Agricorp International, Nigerian based spices producing, processing, and exporting company has raised $17.5 million in Series A funding to increase its processing capacity up to 7000 metric tonnes.
This fund was raised from Vami Nigeria, One Capital LLC and AFEX. Nigerian-based Vami led the funding round with $11.5 million in equity, while the other investors provided working capital financing for the company. Ernst & Young (Nigeria) served as transaction advisers while Elisio Law Office and Pavestone Legal served as legal advisers.
Founded in 2018 by Kenneth Obiajulu and Wale Omotimirin, Agricorp is contributing to meeting the growing demand of spices as an export material.
Data from Nigeria's Ministry of Agriculture shows that despite being the third highest exporter of ginger globally, Nigeria's ginger production is put at 31 million MT while demand is put at 65 million MT, leaving a gap of 34 million MT. While Nigeria accounts for more than 16% of the global production of ginger, it gets less than 4% of the export market share.
Kenneth Obiajulu, CEO, Agricorp:"We believe that by increasing our capacity to 7,000MT, we will maximise the potentials to boost Nigeria's forex earnings through export, contribute our quota to improving the Nigerian GDP from agriculture, and serve as a worthy model to African youths who aspire to be agribusiness owners. We want to show them it is possible and very rewarding as well".
Vami Nigeria, lead investors: "we led the round because we saw a clear growth path, strong social impact, excellent financial trajectory, and global collaborations with key partners. Most importantly, the depth of knowledge, passion, and resilience of the team is unrivaled.
Samirah Ade-Adebiyi, Managing Director at AFEX, said "our other businesses have transacted with Agricorp on several occasions and have seen the business grow over time. Now, we are committed to providing the working capital they require to scale their operations at any level".
It will take a bold approach to put Nigeria on the global export radar by leveraging investments to build simple processing systems for spices and other agro products. Agricorp aims to be that bold company standing at the forefront of enhancing global food systems.