Unga Group partners with Dutch Nutreco to establish JVs in Kenya, Uganda

KENYA – Unga Group, a Kenyan-based holding company with investments in flour milling and manufacturing of human nutrition products and animal feeds, has forged an investment agreement with Nutreco International B.V. to establish joint venture companies in Kenya and Uganda through its subsidiaries Unga Farm Care and Unga Millers.

Under the agreement, Unga Farm Care, the region’s leading manufacturer and marketer of a broad portfolio of quality animal nutrition and health products, will invest in the establishment of a 50:50 joint venture company in Kenya with the Dutch animal nutrition and aquafeed company, Nutreco.

The parties will further transfer their respective Kenyan aquafeed business and other assets to the new entity.

Unga group notes that the aquafeed business is a small part of Unga Farm Care which shall continue without changes.

In 2017, Unga and Nutreco opened an extruded fish feed plant within the framework of the Dutch Public-Private Partnership program, FoodTechAfrica (FTA).

The project, envisioned in a meeting between FTA and UHL on 9th June, 2013, received a significant grant from the Dutch Government and incorporated a number of other partners including Ottevanger Milling Engineers, Almex Extrusion and Larive International.

The facility, the first of its size and sophistication in East Africa, has an installed processing capacity of 5,000 tonnes of high-quality extruded fish feed annually for the regional market.

Meanwhile in neighbouring Uganda, Unga Millers and Nutreco is set to establish a JV company and the partners shall transfer or procure their respective Uganda animal feed and nutrition businesses and other assets.

The recent move by the giant miller, is part of its strategy to cut costs and improve efficiency.

This comes days after it announced the planned sale of Ennsvalley Bakery assets to cold storage and cold chain logistics company BigCold Kenya.

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Unga group first acquired a 52% stake in the baked goods company in 2015 for about Ksh 54O million (US$5 million) from Kenya’s sole inflight caterer NAS Holdings.

The transaction which was undertaken through its joint venture with Seaboard Corporation, UNGA Holdings Limited, saw the Nairobi Securities Exchange-listed firm re-enter the baking business after its sale of Elliots Bakeries in the 1990s.

The transaction also enabled the miller to diversify its business which was mainly comprising of milling maize and wheat grains and manufacture of animal feeds.

Following the transaction, Unga became a major baker of breads, rolls and pastries that still strictly follows Schneider’s choice of traditional recipes.

The buyer of the assets, BigCold is Kenya’s leading cold storage and logistics company.

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