Kenya’s ice cream, chocolate maker Glacier Products clinches investment from EXEO Capital

KENYA – Glacier Products Ltd, one of Eastern Africa’s leading ice cream and chocolate confectionery manufacturers operating from Kenya has received an undisclosed amount of investment from EXEO Capital, a leading pan-African private equity investment manager, through its Food and Agribusiness fund, Agri-Vie Fund II.

The financial and management backing, according to reports by Private Equity News, is aimed to steer the producers of renowned Dairyland ice-creams and chocolates, towards continued sustainable growth.

Commenting on the investment Sunil Shah and Minesh Shah, Directors of Glacier, said, “We are delighted to partner with EXEO Capital, who share our vision of continuing to grow the leading and trusted brand. Glacier will benefit greatly from EXEO’s sector expertise, as the company enters its next phase of growth.”

According to the reports, the transaction is subject to receipt of regulatory approvals and is expected to be completed in the coming weeks.

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“This investment is a great addition to our growing food and agribusiness portfolio on the continent. Our partner, Glacier, has laid a solid foundation, which combined with EXEO Capital’s sector knowledge, strategic insights, and extensive pan-African networks, will steer the company towards continued sustainable growth,” Paul Nguru, Partner at EXEO Capital, said.

EXEO Capital currently has approximately US$ 250 million assets under management, and has completed more than 25 transactions in several growth sectors across East and Southern Africa over the past 12 years.

Swathi Rao, Associate Vice President at I&M Burbidge Capital – the lead transaction advisor to Glacier – said, “We are delighted to have advised on this transaction for our client, Glacier. It is a fantastic business with really exciting brands and products. The partnership ethos and shared values between Glacier and EXEO were evident throughout the transaction.”

“Glacier will benefit greatly from EXEO’s sector expertise, as the company enters its next phase of growth.”

Sunil Shah and Minesh Shah, Directors of Glacier

Eastern Africa’s leading ice cream and chocolate maker

Glacier, was incorporated in 1979, as a small ice cream company in the capital of Kenya but was later acquired by its current owners as a going concern in 1995.

Since then, the processing company has grown by leaps and bounds from a turn-over of KSH 10 million (US$100,000) at the takeover per year to the current figures above KSH 1 billion (US$10 million) as at 2018.

The company has continuously upgraded and improved its processes to position itself as a market leader in the dynamic industry, expanding its ice-cream range to getting into brand licensing to work with the Warner Bros. characters for a new children’s product line.

They further integrated Amore Mia ice cream to Dairyland Premium and introduced Mio ice cream, a cheap yet high quality ice cream.

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Glacier further diversified its operations and ventured into production of chocolate compounds, chocolate bars, spray chocolate and coating chocolate in 2015 at its new manufacturing plant in Kikuyu, Kiambu county with a production capacity of 150 kgs of chocolates per hour.

The company has also added new products to its offering such as dessert topping sauce, chocolate spread and whipping cream.

Demonstrating its ability to control food safety hazards in the food chain and protect its consumers, the food processing company acquired ISO 22000:2005 certification in 2012.

It later upgraded it to FSSC 22000 – one of the highest accreditations in food safety, awarded to companies that meet the stringent food safety management systems requirements.

Its flagship brand, Dairyland has received many prestigious honours, including the Superbrands East Africa status for maintaining brand leadership in East Africa. It is a common household brand, with its reach spanning across Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, South Sudan, Ethiopia and Rwanda.

The company also bagged a significant accolade, at the prestigious Africa Food Industry Excellence Awards 2018 in the Sugar and Confectionery sub-category for the New Plant of the year.

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