Â Raheem Akingbolu
Farmers and other players in the value chain of the Agricultural sector are in for better future as GBfoods, a leading multinational food group based in Barcelona, and Helios Investment Partners, a premier Africa-focused private investment firm, have created a joint-venture to acquire certain assets and leading brands in Africa.
Helios Investment Partners is an Africa-focused private investment firm established in 2004 and led and managed by a predominantly African team and based in London, Lagos and Nairobi.
According to a statement jointly issued by the two organisations, the Chief Executive Officer of GBfoods, Ignasi Ricou, was quoted as saying that with this transaction, Africa will become the key market for GBfoods, where Jumbo, a leading brand from the stable, has been present for more than 40 years.
The statement further indicated that the transaction which will create one of Africa’s largest FMCG groups is expected to help the company to operate in 30 African countries, including leadership positions in Nigeria and Ghana.
Under GBfoods Africa Holdco B.V., the joint venture owned by GBfoods and Helios, is said to have acquired assets from different African companies including leading brands such as Jumbo (bouillon), Gino and Pomo (tomato paste), and Jago (milk powder and mayonnaise), as well as Bama (mayonnaise) distribution rights for Africa. The agreement also includes three production plants in Africa, one in Ghana and two in Nigeria, and incorporates more than 600 workers from different nationalities. This will result in a leading pan-African culinary products company with presence in over 30 African countries.
The implication of the new development, according to the CEO is that Africa will hence become the key market of the Spanish multinationalÂ as GBfoods will be able to reinforce leadership position as one of the most influential international groups in the food industry, consolidating its commitment to Africa.
Up to day, the business in this continent contributed about 20% of the Group’s turnover. The Spanish multinational manufactures every year more than 4,000 million Jumbo cubes for the African market. The growth of the product portfolio and the acquisition of new assets will allow GBfoods to expand its presence in Africa, becoming a reference in the African households.
“With this acquisition we strengthen our position in Africa, being present in 30 countries, including key countries like Nigeria and Ghana, with enormous potential for growth. We also expand our portfolio of products with popular and well-known brands such as Gino, Pomo, Jago and Bama, introducing us to new strategic categories such as tomato, milk powder and mayonnaise. From now on we can proudly say that GBfoods has doubled the number of consumers in Africa to become part of the daily food of millions of Africans,” Ricou added.