NIGERIA – AFEX Commodities Exchange Limited (AFEX), a private commodity exchange firm in Nigeria has secured an investment for an undisclosed amount from Consonance Investment Managers, a Sub-Saharan Africa focused early-stage and growth investment firm.

Established in 2014, AFEX is Nigeria’s first private sector commodity exchange firm, engaging in provision of storage services, of electronic warehouse receipts, and the facilitation of input financing.

The Abuja-based company has developed a commodities exchange for products like sorghum, maize and cocoa, underpinned by more than 100,000 smallholder farmers who are supported by AFEX in gaining access to credit (through microfinance partners) and farm inputs.

It has developed a network of warehouses around the country, in which it stores farmers’ harvests. The goods are traded and delivered to buyers via AFEX’s online trading platform.

The funds will be used to deepen retail commodity transactions and strengthen operations and technology systems.

“We are delighted to welcome Consonance Investment Managers as partners on this journey. The future requires AFEX to provide our infrastructure as a service to the market and unlock capital for the agriculture sector in Nigeria.”

“We will grow our operations ten-fold over the next five years; we also aspire to increase funding to agriculture from NGN 500bn (US$ 1.5bn) to more than NGN 2tn (US$7.5bn) by 2025,” said Ayodeji Balogun, AFEX Chief Executive Officer.

“We are proud to support Ayodeji and the AFEX team in their mission to transform Nigeria’s agricultural sector. AFEX increases trust and transparency in local agricultural supply chains by connecting farmers to market.”

“AFEX has established the infrastructure which will undergird Nigeria’s food security agenda and the Central Bank of Nigeria’s economic diversification program. It will also be vital in deepening capital markets in line with the mission of the Securities and Exchange Commission of Nigeria,” said Mobolaji Adeoye, Managing Partner at Consonance Investment Managers.