XSML provides long term finance to RJ Trading
Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo, 4 April 2013
Today, Dutch fund manager XSML announced its investment in RJ Trading a family-owned retail business, which has diversified in patisserie / bakery and the distribution of well-established brands for ice cream, bakeries & patisserie in the Congolese market. RJ Trading also operates a supermarket and an IT equipment & services business, Congo Tech. This investment, through XSML’s Central Africa SME Fund, is the first long term finance for RJ Trading and contributes to the expansion plans in the bakery and IT business lines.
The much needed long term financing covers capital expenditure for the bakery and IT activities as well as the growing need for working capital for across all business lines. As DRC has no local production for quality bakery products or local manufacturing capacity of IT hardware, these products need to be imported, leading to a permanent high demand for working capital.
The Managing Director of RJ Trading, Mr. Adnan Jammal, states: “RJ Trading is in a critical expansion phase where all our business lines need funding to grow. XSML supports us in the growth of our business by providing us with long term finance.”
Marcel Posthuma, Managing Partner at XSML says: “RJ Trading fills an important gap in providing quality bakery products as well as ICT hardware and services. Through its IT business, Congo Tech, ICT hardware is sold but it also provides critical installation and maintenance services, essential for ICT to operate successfully. We are able to provide longer term finance and can take a higher risk on enterprises that we believe are able to take a next step in their growth.”
RJ Trading is the eleventh investment made by CASF and its eighth investment in DRC. CASF is an investment fund investing in small and medium-sized enterprises in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the Central African Republic. The fund believes in achieving sustainable economic development by encouraging entrepreneurship in the fast growing markets of DRC and CAR. Currently, many opportunities in these countries remain unexploited due to the lack of risk capital and support. The multiplier impact of such entrepreneurial endeavors creates jobs and income. CASF is a USD 25m fund (target) with 80% allocation to DRC and 20% in CAR. CASF will provide risk capital with an investment size ranging from USD 100,000 to a maximum of USD 500,000. Investors in CASF are IFC, FMO and Lundin Foundation.
About RJ Trading SPRL
RJ Trading SPRL is a company managed by the Jammal family. The company has several business lines including the marketing of bakery products, a patisserie-boulangerie (Patachoux), a supermarket and an IT hardware & services company, Congo Tech. RJ Trading supplies its ice cream and bakery products to most of the patisseries, bakeries, supermarkets and restaurants in Kinshasa. In the future the company intends to open more bakeries in Kinshasa and an academy where prospective bakers can learn the trade.
XSML is an independent private equity fund manager with a strategic focus on emerging markets. As an architect, building new funds and local fund managers in frontier markets, XSML, eXtra Small Medium Large, aims to grow small businesses into medium and large enterprises. XSML was founded in 2008. The managing partners have an extensive background in emerging markets in the areas of asset management, corporate and development banking and corporate restructuring. Our experience have shown that demand for finance from small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) remains largely untapped despite increased interest in emerging markets from international investors. XSML bridges this gap between the international investors and the SMEs in emerging markets.