Antwerp-based Incofin Investment Management has raised an additional $27 million from four new institutional investors bringing the total of agRIF, a third-generation fund that targets smallholder farmers, to $140 million.
The new investors backing the fund are AXA Investment Managers; KBC Pensioenfonds, one of Belgium’s largest pension funds; impact investor Invest in Visions; Korys, a family office belonging to the Colruyt Group; and MRBB, the investment company of the Boerenbond Group.
“Launched in 2015, the agRIF fund seeks to address the scarcity of financial services adapted to the needs of smallholder farmers, an economic segment representing the largest portion of those living on less than $2 per day,” Incofin IM said in a statement.
The fund’s other investors include the European Investment Bank, Proparco, the Swiss Investment Fund for Emerging Markets (SIFEM), the Belgische Investeringsmaatschappij voor Ontwikkelingslanden (BIO), Volksvermogen, ACV-CSC Metea, and Incofin Investment Management.
The Antwerp-based firm was originally targeting $200 million for the fund, but given that it intends to hold a final close in June, it expects to reach “at least $150 million,” Incofin’s business development manager Dana Roelofs told Agri Investor.
Incofin has deployed $34 million of agRIF’s capital so far, investing it in agricultural and rural-focused institutions in Latin America, Africa and Asia, including Crystal, a microfinance organization in Georgia; and Sohan Lal, an agriculture-focused financial intermediary in India.
“Additional debt investments have been made into financial intermediaries focused on the agriculture and rural sectors and into agricultural producer organizations,” Roelofs said. “Debt investments have occurred in countries such as Ecuador, Nicaragua, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Cambodia and Tajikistan.”
Incofin manages and advises funds that invest in microfinance institutions in developing countries. Its main goal is to reach out to people who live in more secluded rural areas and/or who are active in the agricultural sector.
The firm finances and supports organizations in 40 countries from its offices in Belgium, Colombia, Kenya and Cambodia as well as its advisory team in India, according to its website.