US impact investor Creation Investments has joined India’s Everstone Group to lead a $16.6 million (€14.8m) fourth round of funding in Indian agri-logistics company Sohan Lal Commodity Management (SLCM).
Creation Investments becomes the fifth venture backer for the company, and the first foreign investor, joining existing Indian firms Everstone, Mayfield Advisors, Nexus Venture Partners and Emerging India Fund, the venture arm of Indian multinational financing group ICICI.
SLCM provides warehousing services for more than 150 crops and last year began providing loans to farmers after acquiring a non-banking finance company (NBFC).
“In addition to their significant warehousing and commodity management innovations, SLCM was the first company in this sector to provide financing for its customers via the acquisition of an NBFC and this fits perfectly with our mandate to invest in innovative financial solutions,” Ken Vander Weele, co-founder & partner at Creation Investments Capital Management said in a statement.
SLCM said it plans to use the funding to expand its warehousing operations from 760 to 1500 across India and to triple the number of loans made by its agri financing facility. The company’s agri loan facility has been operational for 15 months and has extended $37 million of credit to farmers and businesses.
SLCM says post harvest losses in India are around 10 percent and SLCM’s warehousing technology, including cold storage, has cut post harvest losses to 0.5 percent irrespective of infrastructure, crop or geographic location.
Creation Investments is currently investing from its second fund, Creation Investments Social Fund II, a $75m vehicle focused on financial services and microfinance business in Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe.