TURKEY – Anadolu Etap, the leading fruit producer in Turkey, has secured a €60 million (US$67 million) financing arrangement with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) to ensure greater flexibility and provide additional resources for the company’s growth.

The credit facility, of which half has been syndicated to the Dutch development bank FMO, is also expected  to boost Turkey’s agriculture sector.

Anadolu Etap is a joint venture between major Turkish companies Anadolu Group and Özgörkey Holding. The company supplies fruits and produces fruit puree, concentrates and juices throughout Turkey and 60 other countries.

To meet the demand, the company operates eight farms spanning over 3,000 hectares, supporting 5 million trees. The company also runs three juice concentrate factories and a packaging facility.

The new financing will help Anadolu Etap ensure continuous growth despite the uncertainty caused by the coronavirus pandemic. According to a statement by ERBD, the loan has a maturity of six years, providing greater flexibility and resources to fund capital needs as demand increases.

“There is no doubt about the severity of the impact of the coronavirus outbreak on agriculture in Turkey and elsewhere. By providing finance to Anadolu Etap, the major fruit producer and exporter in the country, we are also supporting local farmers and livelihoods in rural areas,” Arvid Tuerkner, EBRD Managing Director for Turkey, said.

In cooperation with the EBRD, the company revealed that it will further expand its AgroAcademy programme for farmers, with a particular focus on women.

Anadolu Etap has also unveiled plans to partner with educational institutions to improve the transfer of knowledge and skills to farmers and provide greater training and employment opportunities to Syrian refugees.

In addition, Anadolu Etap has also committed to further raise the bar in corporate governance and business conduct standards. The company plans to certify its new orchards and farms to Global Good Agricultural Practices and adopt innovative agricultural technologies. It also intends to step up technical advisory and pre-financing services offered to farmers.

Bahadır Açık, CEO of Anadolu Etap, commented: “The loan from the EBRD and FMO is an indication of the lenders’ trust in Turkey, our company and in the Turkish agriculture sector.

“This financial support enables us to continue moving towards further growth and innovation as we work to meet the domestic and global demand for healthy produce.”

Wojtek Boniaszczuk, EBRD Head of Agribusiness, Turkey, said: “We are proud to continue our long-term partnership with the Anadolu Group and Anadolu Etap, supporting the company’s investments in state-of-the-art technologies, expansion of the AgroAcademy whilst also promoting higher corporate governance standards in Turkey’s agriculture sector.”