MOZAMBIQUE – Chicoa Fish Farm, the largest commercial provider of fish in Mozambique has closed its Series A equity funding round totalling US$1.5 million from Goodwell Investments.
The vertically integrated aquaculture business, is focused on securing its supply chain through primary production of tilapia, runs a breeding program, and develops fish sales and distribution channels in Mozambique, Malawi, South Africa, and Zambia.
According to a report by Tech Moran, Chicoa will utilize the new funding to transition to the next stage of growth i.e. processing and distribution of frozen tilapia products.
To this end, the company plans to expand its production facilities, install a processing plant and include local small-scale farmers in its model.
“We are delighted that Goodwell has joined us on this really exciting journey to develop fish farming as an industry in Mozambique.”Gerry McCollum, CEO of Chicoa Fish Farm
The investment will enable Chicoa produce over 5,000 tons of tilapia per annum, putting more than US$10M of direct income into the local economy each year, create jobs and generate income for local farmers
“We are delighted that Goodwell has joined us on this really exciting journey to develop fish farming as an industry in Mozambique,” commented Gerry McCollum, CEO of Chicoa Fish Farm.
“Being a first-mover is really challenging, but also hugely impactful. Not only do Goodwell bring a wealth of experience to the table, but their philosophy of supporting for transformative businesses in areas of most need makes them a perfect partner for us,” he added.
Goodwell, an impact investment and advisory firm was attracted to back Chicoa as the farm sustainably works towards increasing yields and facilitate import substitution by providing affordable, high-quality source of protein.
Food security is one of the biggest challenges facing Africa and Mozambique is amongst the worst affected, with nearly 80% of the population unable to afford an adequate diet.
While the continent has the resources to feed its population, most countries are net importers of food. Mozambique, for example, imports nearly double the value of fish products it exports.
Further, regional aquaculture businesses currently satisfy just 6% of the total demand for fish across the Southern Africa region.
In the face of overfishing and climate change, aquaculture, in particular, provides a means of availing a stable fish supply without increasing the harvesting of wild fisheries beyond the maximum sustainable yields.
“Chicoa’s significant traction achieved to date coupled with our visit to the farm in Tete solidified our confidence in the company and its potential.
“The company is driven by an experienced team with deep roots in aquaculture and Southern Africa, and we look forward to supporting Chicoa to fulfil its potential,” said Dhanyal Davidson, Senior Investment Associate at Goodwell Investments.
Goodwell joins long-term Chicoa Fish Farm investor and leader in sustainable aquaculture investments, Aqua-Spark.
Amy Novogratz, Founder and Managing Partner at Aqua-Spark commented, “We are excited about Goodwell Investments joining the investor base of Chicoa. Finding a high-quality partner like Goodwell, committed to joining us for the long-term development of regional food security, keeps Chicoa’s vision on track.”
Goodwell’s investment in Chicoa comes days after Kenyan tilapia producer Victory Farms announced funding from Dutch family-backed impact investment firm, DOB Equity.
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