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AAF SME Fund Impact: Matonjeni


Business Challenge

Matonjeni is an emerging juice and meal enhancer manufacturer located in Lusaka, Zambia. The Company’s product range includes 6 brands (3 cordials & 3 ready to drink) and a stew mix brand. Matonjeni products are currently sold in Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Matonjeni had limited working capital funding under its operating business plan. The business owned no distribution channels and required significant Capex and working capital investments to ensure its growth and expansion.

Our Approach

The AAF SME Fund has invested a total of $4.85m in Matonjeni since October 2013. The Fund’s approach was to:

  • upscale production capacity by installing new bottling lines;
  • decrease production cost by investing in in-house bottle blowing capacity;
  • implement an aggressive drive to list in all major channels;
  • work with local banks to provide working capital facilities since the business model requires significant working capital.

Our Impact

Improved Livelihoods

  • Established a vendor network programme with over 75 vending carts. At maturity, the network is expected to create over 1,000 self-employed business people, with middle-income profiles, in both Zambia and Zimbabwe
  • Direct and indirect job creation through service providers working directly in the Matonjeni supply chain i.e. merchandisers and transporters

Enhanced Food Security

  • Set up new production line with 10x capacity
  • Increased beverage holding capacity from 5,000 litres to 30,000 litres
  • Installed a 10,000-litre emulsifying tank
  • Innovative fruit formulation to reduce the cost of producing beverages thereby expanding the company’s market reach across different social classes

Improved Business Operations

  • Re-admission of Matonjeni products into Pick n Pay, TM, OK and Spar
  • Increased capacity of filler machine and put-up new bottle blower
  • Installed a new stew mix plant
  • Re-engineered all product brands to enhance taste and aesthetic appeal
  • Launched in-house transport network to facilitate in-house movement for increased efficiency
  • Negotiated a bank facility with Banc ABC and the Africa Guarantee Fund to open an overdraft facility to fund incremental working capital
  • Setting up vending network to facilitate product distribution
  • Concluding a secondary co-investment transaction with a leading Southern Africa FMCG focused PE firm

ESG Impact

  • Construction of certified boreholes
  • Enhanced food safety standards through successful registration with local food standards authorities in Zambia and Zimbabwe
  • Promotion of regional trade through SADCC certification process