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Twiga Foods Aims at West Africa After Securing $30 Million


TechInAfrica — Twiga Foods, a Kenya-based B2B food distributor, has secured a total of $30 million from lenders and investors led by Goldman Sachs.

The company secured $6.25 million of the funding in debt and $23.75 million in equity, classified as a Series B round where IFC, TLcom Capital, and Creadev joined Goldman on the VC side.

Twiga plans to use the funds to set up a distribution center in Nairobi and deepen its conversion to offering supply chain services for both agricultural and FMCG products.

The Nairobi-based company will expand into more cities in Kenya, including Mombasa. Twiga is also aiming for Pan-African expansion by the third quarter of 2020.

“We’re working on French West Africa…we see significant opportunity in those markets,” Twiga CEO Peter Njonjo, said. The company will name the new country (or countries) in the following year, he added.

Goldman Sachs confirmed its lead on Twiga’s Series B funding. The US-based finance firm has supported several African startups, including e-commerce venture, Jumia and South African fintech startup, Jumo.

Twiga’s financing comes 11 months after a $10 million raise and announcement it would create additional revenue streams by moving into the B2B supply chain for FMCG and other consumer products.

Previously, Twiga focused primarily on agricultural goods and connecting more efficiently to marketplaces the produce of farmers.

The venture has moved quickly on diversifying its supply-chain product mix. “We’re not just doing fruits and vegetables…I’d say we’re at 50/50 now between FMCG  and fresh,” Njonjo said.

“We’ve pivoted a bit as a company…we see our purpose as an organization around what I would call aggregating the informal retail, then using technology, and then using that buying power to essentially provide lower, better-cost goods across cities,” he said.

Co-founded in Nairobi in 2014 by Njonjo and Grant Brooke, Twiga Foods serves around 3,000 outlets per day with produce through a network of 17,000 farmers and 8,000 vendors. It opens for coordination for parties who wants to work exchange goods and arrange the payment via mobile app using M-Pesa mobile.



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